Central Oklahoma Finds Record Generosity

Central Oklahomans gave more each day in the The Salvation Army Christmas Red Kettle than ever before. The average daily income for The Salvation Army Red Kettles in 2013 was more than $22,000 up from $17,000 in 2012.

“We are so grateful for Oklahomans who stepped up and gave during this season when we needed it the most,” says Captain Carlyle Gargis, Area Commander for The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command. “With less bell ringing days due to weather and a late Thanksgiving, we were praying for a miracle.”

2013 The Salvation Army Kettle Campaign
Central Oklahoma Area Command
Canadian County $29,327.44
Cleveland County $131,068.73
Oklahoma County $313,375.96
Paycom Donation $56,100.00
 okckettle.org $3,330.00
Gold Coin and Trinkets $1,805.00
GRAND TOTAL $535,007.13

Last year, The Salvation Army had a total of 38 full bell ringing days. This year, only 24 full bell ringing days were available due to the harsh wintery weather conditions and a late Thanksgiving calendar date.

“The total raised for this year’s Central Oklahoma Area Command’s Salvation Army Red Kettle campaign is $535,007, and we are so grateful,” said Captain Gargis. “If we had the same time as last year to ring bells, we would have met, and even surpassed last year’s record-breaking campaign income of more than $600,000. Oklahomans were more generous than ever this Christmas!   These funds help us stock the organization’s food pantry, youth programs, outreach ministries, and other emergency needs.”

Oklahomans not only gave of their resources this year, they also gave of their time.   To provide Christmas assistance in 2013, the total number of volunteer hours required was 11,948, fulfilled by 4,553 volunteers.

Christmas Volunteers 2013
Volunteers 4,553
Volunteer Hours 11,948

The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Program was able to assist more than 2,000 households, and 9,052 individuals.   Donations and funds raised were used to provide area families with a Christmas food box and gifts for children and seniors.

“This year, Oklahomans provided the finest, quality gifts ever,” said Captain Charlotte Gargis, Associate Area Commander.   “We have received an abundance of ‘thanks yous’ and hugs from families who experienced the joy of Christmas by your generosity.   Because of Oklahomans generosity this Christmas season, these funds will continue to meet on-going needs thoughout the year.   As we say, ‘Need knows no season. Please know that your giving was appreciated and truly made a difference this Christmas and beyond.   Thank you for remembering those who are lost, lonely and sometimes forgotten.”

Nearly 100 Red Kettle locations were set up at various Central Oklahoma area businesses to collect donations though December 24. Those locations included Homeland, Wal-mart, Hobby Lobby, Bass Pro Shops and more.

The Salvation Army of Central Oklahoma provides services in three counties, including Oklahoma County, Cleveland County and Canadian County.

“The Salvation Army in Central Oklahoma is helping those in need, 365 days a year, 24 hours a day,” said Captain Carlyle Gargis.   “There are more demands than we can meet, but with the community’s continued support year round, we are able to provide relief from suffering and set a course for transformed lives.”

Stillwater Thanks Their Volunteers

The Salvation Army of Stillwater, OK wants to thank you for helping make the Christmas season a very joyous occasion for 512 children and senior adults in Stillwater, Payne and Noble Counties.  An additional 432 benefitted from the food boxes provided to each household.  We would not be able to serve so many without your help – whether it is as time, talent, or resources.

Thank you to:

  • Noon Kiwanis, OSU Home Mom’s (Kappa Sigma), First Assembly of God, Charley Neely, Hunter Robinson, Payne County 4H, Noon Lions, Eagle Heights Baptist Church, Troy Williamson, Delta Sigma Pi, First Church of Nazarene, Freda & Richard Lyle, SHS Beta Club, Richard Eggermen,the Adult Sunday School of University Heights Baptist, and the Methodist Men, and many individuals that helped these groups to keep the bells ringing.
  • Special thanks to Eagle Heights Baptist Church who rang the most hours for a group and raised $1,459.53!  The Methodist Men rang 27 hours but also raised $1,486.20! The individual volunteer who rang the most hours was Troy Williamson with 97 hours and raised over $4,200!
  • A BIG Thank you to our Kettle Stand sponsors:  Harrison Electric, Shamblin Rentals, Stillwater Milling Company, Advanced Chiropractic, Dr. Stephanie Kendrick, D.D.S., Merrifeld Office Supply, Cushing Veternariary Clinic, L.L.C., VMI Inc., and Baker Pharmacy.  Thank you to each of these businesses for their generosity!
  • In addition to all the bell ringing, we also had several businesses and groups that hosted an Angel Tree site.  We appreciate these business for making the angels accessible for individuals to adopt and purchase the gifts.  Thank you to Atwoods Ranch & Home, Casner Student Council-OSU, CATOs, Countryside Baptist Church, Glo Salon, IBC Bank, JCPenney, Old Navy, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Stillwater Bible Church, Stillwater Junior High, USDA Food Bank, Walgreens, Walls Bargain Cener, Wal-Mart on Perkins Road and Your Hair Rocks!
  •  Much thanks go to Shawnee High School National Honor Society and the “Singing” Baseball team who volunteered their afternoons to unload canned goods, make boxes and fill them for 302 families so that these families could have a Christmas dinner.
  •  In addition, there were numerous volunteers who assisted with taking applications, preparing the angel tags, and processing the angels as they came in & helping recipients to carry the gifts, bicycles and food boxes out to their cars on Distribution Day.  We could not have had such a successful day if it had not been for all these volunteers, their wonderful, cheery attitudes and strong backs!

And to your wonderfully supportive Advisory Board – Henry Siems, outgoing Chairman, Michelle Charles, Deborah Deal, Norm McNickle, Denise Strickland, Mark Wagner, Minda Wilson and Rob Woods – you all are the best!  Thank you for your dedication to serve, your words of encouragement and your presence when we need you!  It is an honor to serve along side you!

Your dedication to the persons in need in our community was very evident in the results of our Christmas campaign.   Our goal for Christmas 2013 was $60,000 and in spite of having fewer days to ring bells and the bitter cold we were able to raise $ 51,785.73 thanks to you!

Again, our heartfelt thanks to all of The Salvation Army supporters!   With your continued support, we will continue to honor our promise of Doing The Most Good for those in the most need throughout the coming year.