The Salvation Army’s Modesto Citadel Corps is extending its sign-up period for Christmas toys and food after just 500 needy families applied for help.
The Citadel Corps typically signs up more than 1,000 families from Modesto, Ceres, Salida and Empire for its annual program. Last year, the corps provided toys and food to 1,439 families. Citadel Corps business coordinator Brian Aird suspects the turnout was low because the sign-ups were held several weeks earlier than in past years.
Aird said The Salvation Army will hold additional sign-ups Wednesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Citadel Corps, 625 I St., in downtown.
The Salvation Army in Turlock will sign up families for Christmas toys and food Dec. 2-13. The Salvation Army there works with churches, businesses, nonprofits and others with the holiday food and toys through an effort called Turlock Together. Turlock Together provided toys and food to about 2,000 families in the Turlock area last year.
Besides food for Christmas, families receive food to see them through several days.
The Salvation Army in Turlock and Modesto are gearing up for their annual kettle kickoff luncheons, which mark the start of their holiday fundraising. The money raised at the luncheons and by Salvation Army bell ringers with their distinctive red kettles pays for the organization’s holiday programs as well as its other programs.
The Salvation Army in Turlock and Modesto raise more than $450,000 through the luncheons and bell ringers. Turlock’s kettle kickoff is Nov. 19; Modesto’s is Nov. 21.
Families signing up for toys and food need to bring proof of their income and address and IDs or Social Security cards for every member of the household. The Salvation Army needs donations of nonperishable food and new toys. Donations in Modesto can be dropped off at the Citadel Corps, 625 I St. Donations in Turlock can be dropped off at any of the blue Turlock Together barrels throughout town or at The Salvation Army, 893 Lander Ave.