by Andrea Wilkinson, WVW Community Correspondent
The Salvation Army has always been especially active during the Christmas holiday season. The ringing bells, red kettles and the paper Angels hanging on the Christmas Trees are more than just charity, they have become a tradition in many of our lives as a way to share our own blessings with others who may be in need.
Some have wondered how the COVID pandemic will be affecting those traditions this year. Many of us have feared, in a year that has taken so much from so many, that maybe they may not take place at all.
According to Sergeant Bryan Brinlee and his wife Sgt. Tracy of the Salvation Army in Chickasha, they report both the bell ringing and Angel Tree will continue on this year, with just a few adaptations of course.
Anyone wishing to participate in ‘Register to Ring’ and ring a bell to collect monetary donations this season can sign up by visiting the website registertoring.com. To help ensure the safety of participants, PPE equipment will be provided to ringers. This includes a branded mask, apron, disposable gloves and disinfectant.
Sergeant Tracy pointed out that 85 cents of every dollar will stay in the community in which it is collected.
New this year are ‘table tents’, located on the tables at Chickasha restaurants Interurban and A&E Grill that have displays with scannable QR Code. When you use the camera of your smart phone to photograph the code, it will open a website that will allow you to donate directly to your community.
Those wanting to buy a gift for the Angel Tree can do so by visiting participating Walmarts to pick a tag off an Angel Tree or you can find instructions on their website www.salvationarmyusa.org to find out how to donate and purchase gifts online using Walmart’s Registry for Good.
Also, Burkes Outlet in Chickasha and the Chickasha Chamber of Commerce are hosting toy drives this year.
All gifts must be received by December 11th. Those who registered for the Angel Tree this year will be picking-up their gifts at a drive-thru toy distribution hosted by John Holt Chevrolet in Chickasha.