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Nov 8, 2018

Salvation Army Launches Its Kettle Appeal

The bells were ringing this morning and the iconic red kettles were in display in the downtown area of the City. It is a reminder that the Christmas season is upon us and importantly, the Salvation Army is counting on you to raise funds to continue the good work they do. The donations all go to assist the needy and the underprivileged so whenever you contribute it is all for those who have less. Starting today, the kettles will be placed at popular stores as well as in Belmopan and San Ignacio. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

This morning, at the start of the business in downtown Belize City, the melody of Christmas carols and a ringing bell echoed in the distance. It is the start of the annual Salvation Army’s Kettle Appeal. Across the north and south sides of the city, Belmopan and San Ignacio, red pots will be placed at businesses as the well known fundraiser commences. While it is a century since the Salvation Army has been in existence, in Belize, the Kettle Appeal started in 1950 when the humanitarian organization established its services. District Officer Joliker Leandre says that the aim is to raise one hundred thousand dollars.

 

Joliker Leandre

Joliker Leandre, District Officer, Salvation Army

“Over the years, the public in general and the business community have been very, very supportive to the Salvation Army. In fact all the programmes we have will never be able to achieve them without the support from the public. We are very grateful; the public has never let us down even in the most difficult times of the year. So we are sure this year is no different. The target is one hundred thousand dollars; we only made it once—that was in 2015, the best every year—but after that we come close to it, but haven’t made it. But nevertheless, even when we fall short, the public always comes through for us and we have always been able to achieve every goal that we have set, as far as our welfare programme is concerned.”

 

The main expenses is during the Christmas, where the Salvation Army assists over eight hundred and fifteen families with food hampers as well as gifts for the underprivileged children. During the year, it also provides assistance, while managing two night shelters and the primary school.  To jumpstart the fundraising activity, for the fourth consecutive year, Scotia Bank Belize has partnered with the organization, donating to the cause.

 

Erwin Arthurs

Erwin Arthurs, Branch Manager, Scotia Bank Belize City

“For a few years now we have been teaming up with them for the special reason that we know that they will make use of the funds and give to the most needy and that’s our goal to ensure that it reaches the most needy. The donation is what we normally do; we believe that it is a good start to get the ball rolling when it comes to giving out the Christmas treats to the needy.”

 

The Belize City Council, although under new leadership, came out to support the initiative. The launch was nostalgic for Deputy Mayor Oscar Arnold, who is also a former employee of the bank.

 

Oscar Arnold

Oscar Arnold, Deputy Mayor, Belize City Council

“I have made a recommendation to Mayor Wagner who is out this week. So as soon as he is back and looks that over, we will be making a donation to the Salvation Army. We’ve also committed to Major Leandre that if they need help manning a few of the kettles that our councillors will be out there doing that as well. So he will be setting up that schedule and getting back to us. I have some great friends here; I had some great staff and I was telling them this morning that while I was standing on the steps that one of the values that I learned while working at Scotia was to be a good corporate citizen and to give back to the society. A lot of times management matches what the staff raise to donate so I had a great time with some of the management staff, my former colleagues, but yes it was nostalgic and it was fun to be here on Albert Street.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

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