Bell ringers are needed

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)-There's a lot going on with the Salvation Army this time of year.

Major Eugene Gesner, station at the location in Jonesboro, says they're going to need help from the public to make this holiday season a success.

"We're getting ready for the holiday season," Gesner said. "We're doing sign ups for holiday assistance. We're also looking for volunteers to help us with the kettle program. We also have angel trees that will be going out in the community soon and just lots and lots of holiday things coming up."

Gesner says they're in desperate need of volunteers.

"It makes a really big difference," Gesner said. "Like on the kettles last year, we had to spend a little over a quarter of what we made to pay for workers to keep the kettles going."

Gesner says for every volunteer they don't have, that's money out of the kettle and in someone's pocket.

"This difference is about $75 of what comes into that kettle a day," Gesner said. "Most of our kettles stay out for an 8 or 9 hour day, sometimes 10. And even paying minimum wage, that's $75 right there if we have a worker standing and that money has to come out first before have any to help with the needy in the local community."

This Salvation Army is a religious, charitable organization.

It's background is of the Christian faith.

The organization does what it can to help needy members within the community.

"We help the needy throughout our community," Gesner said. "Christmas is just one of the biggest efforts we make. We'll have about 500 families during the Christmas program. We do emergency assistance year round, food pantry. A shelter, which last year housed over 6,000 nights of people staying which is an average of 16 people per night and we can only hold 22. So, it stays busy. There's a lot of things to do to help people in the community."

The Salvation Army needs volunteers to work the kettles this year.

To volunteer your time, call their main office at 932-3785.

For more information about the Salvation Army, log onto this website.

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