Salvation Army holds Christmas in July

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July 13, 2010 9:57:52 AM PDT
We're six months from Christmas, but the Salvation Army has already deployed their famous bells and kettles to the streets of Houston. The sluggish economy and high unemployment means more people need help keeping a roof over their heads. Now an army of volunteers dedicated to helping others asks you to help them. We normally see and hear the familiar bells around Christmas.

"You're going to see our red kettles," said Major Chris Flanagan with the Greater Houston Air Command, Salvation Army. "You're going to see someone standing at the kettle ringing the bell."

This week the Salvation Army will hold Christmas in July, setting up seven kettles in downtown Houston.

"This is the first time we've given it this much emphasis," said Major Flanagan.

The Salvation Army provides food, clothing and financial assistance year-round. But in the first half of this year, they have seen such a great need to provide others with help, they need to ask you for help.

Major Flanagan explained, "We've spent over $560,000, compared to just over $100,000, assisting families that could not pay their rent, could not pay their utilities."

The organization helped 2,900 families last year with rent. For others who lost the roof over their heads, like Latonya Zajack and her daughters, the Salvation Army provides a place to regroup.

"It's given us another place to stay, given us a life to start over," Zajack said.

This is why they need money, to give help to struggling families and those with no other place to go.

"Any change can go a long way for somebody in my situation, because you could be the next person here," Zajack said.

You can find volunteers manning the Salvation Army red kettles at the following locations:

  • One Allen Center
  • Two Allen Center
  • Three Allen Center
  • Continental Center I (1600 Smith)
  • Continental Center II (600 Jefferson)
  • 500 Jefferson -- Main entry on Jefferson into 500
  • KBR Tower (601 Jefferson) -- On the Pease Street Side

You can make a $10 donation via text by texting "sal army" to 9-0-9-9-9.

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