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On November 27, members of the Newtown Lions Club Foundation, Inc presented the Salvation Army Newtown-Bethel Chapter a check for $1,200. The Newtown Lions Club Foundation, Inc has supported the efforts of the Salvation Army Red Kettle campaign for more than a decade.
The funds raised by the Salvation Army Newtown-Bethel chapter go toward helping Newtown’s Social Services Department provide assistance to local residents in need.
During the annual 2016 Red Kettle Campaign in Newtown and Bethel more than 120 volunteers stood outdoors and rang hand bells over the course of two weekends in December, and raising more than $9,000 in donations.
Of those funds, 90 percent have been used to assist residents of Newtown and Bethel.
In addition to funds collected during the Kettle Campaign, the Salvation Army Newtown-Bethel Chapter also received donations from local businesses, individuals, and civic organizations. Those who would like to make a donation to support the local work and mission of The Salvation Army Newtown-Bethel Unit are invited to visit the Newtown Social Services Department, located on the lower level of Town Hall South, 3 Main Street in Newtown; or contact that office at 203-270-4330.
An overview of the assistance provided to Newtown and Bethel residents for Fiscal Year 2017 (October 1, 2016, through September 30, 2017, per statistical reporting) includes the following: 46 residents received help paying utility and oil bills; 20 gift cards were provided for Payless Shoes, for back-to-school shoes, and 79 backpacks were distributed to children prior to the start of the 2017-18 academic year; five people received help toward rent or mortgage payments; three received medical-related financial help; and 19 people received financial help for other needs.
In addition to the above, 640 people benefited from The Salvation Army Newtown Food Pantry.
This year’s public campaign will kick off at the Sandy Hook Tree lighting on Saturday, December 2, and then continue with volunteers stationed around town on Fridays and Saturdays, December 8-9 and December 15-16.
Newtown locations this year will include Bottle Stop Wine & Liquor, Dunkin’ Donuts, Newtown General Store, Newtown Pizza Palace, Stop & Shop, Walgreens, and Yankee Wine & Spirits.
New locations have been added this year as the need for funds continues to increase. Volunteers are still being sought to serve as bell ringers. Slots are 60 minutes each. Past volunteers have dressed as Santa, sang carols, or rang with spouses, friends, and family.
In Bethel, bell ringers will be stationed outside Bethel Municipal Center, Byrd’s Books, and Bethel transfer stations. The Bethel locations will be accepting donations of food and toys for cats and dogs.
To volunteer, contact Red Kettle Campaign Co-Chair Anna Wiedemann at firstname.lastname@example.org, 203-417-3004 or 203-426-1035.