Community generosity: Salvation Army campaign raises more than $13,000 to help needy
by Jeff Richards
Contributing Writer
Jan 03, 2013 | 1120 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Members of the Grand County Thunderbirds cheerleading squad are among the more than 40 volunteers who took turns as bell ringers to raise money for the Moab extension unit of the Salvation Army. The annual red kettle fund drive raised more than $9,000 locally this year, organizers said.                              Photo courtesy of Sara Melnicoff
Members of the Grand County Thunderbirds cheerleading squad are among the more than 40 volunteers who took turns as bell ringers to raise money for the Moab extension unit of the Salvation Army. The annual red kettle fund drive raised more than $9,000 locally this year, organizers said. Photo courtesy of Sara Melnicoff
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  Generous donors filled the local Salvation Army unit’s kettle many times over, officials said. The month-long bell-ringing campaign generated $9,259, according to Sara Melnicoff, co-coordinator for the Salvation Army’s Moab extension unit. Melnicoff said an additional $4,225 in other donations was received during the fundraising campaign, bringing the total to $13,484.

  The money will go toward helping provide emergency assistance to individuals and families in need, Melnicoff said. She said 90 percent of all the kettle donations, as well as 100 percent of the additional funds received, will stay in Moab to be utilized locally.

  According to Melnicoff, more than 40 volunteers took turns as bell ringers stationed in front of the organization’s familiar red kettle, which was set up near the entrance to Moab’s City Market for several hours each day from Nov. 24 until Dec. 24. Several of the volunteers helped out for more than one shift, she added.

  “They loved doing it, and really got a lot out of it,” Melnicoff said of the bell ringers. “We really appreciate them.”

She said the fundraising campaign exceeded expectations.

  “I was shocked at how much money we raised,” Melnicoff said. “Moab is warm-hearted and generous.”

  The money contributed helps change lives, Melnicoff said, explaining that the funds provide a variety of services, including food, clothing, hotel vouchers, train and bus tickets, gas money, car repairs, prescriptions, medical visits, and drug and alcohol rehabilitation services. The Salvation Army even stepped up to help repair a local disabled woman’s leaky toilet recently, she added.

  As another recent example, Melnicoff said a local person who had been jobless and living out of a car, now has a job and lives in a small place in town, thanks to the Salvation Army’s assistance.

  “People are starting to realize that we do have homeless people, and people with needs that we need to address,” Melnicoff said. “If we don’t address them, they just get worse.”

  Although the bell-ringing campaign has concluded, the local unit’s fundraising efforts are ongoing and will continue throughout the year, Melnicoff said. Donations may be mailed to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 1549, Moab, UT 84532. For more information, call 435-259-0910 or 435-401-4685.

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