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Salvation Army meets its fund-raising goal

January 07, 2004|by MARLO BARNHART

marlob@herald-mail.com

With the needs of the less fortunate at an all-time high, Maj. Butch Mallard of the Salvation Army in Hagerstown headed into the 2003 Christmas fund-drive season with some trepidation.

But with the final figures in, Mallard saw how well the people of Washington County responded to those needs, both in the kettle drive and mail campaign.

"Our kettle drive took in $91,593 this year, which is 14 percent over our goal of $80,000," Mallard said Tuesday.

Last year's Salvation Army kettle drive fell $7,000 short of the $85,000 goal and some programs had to be scaled back, Mallard said. Even so, the agency didn't have to cut the weekday lunch program and no staff was laid off.

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The Salvation Army serves approximately 100 meals each weekday and maintains 32 beds for people in need of housing, but the beds usually are filled.

"Our mail campaign totaled $93,000 this year which was about 3 or 4 percent above the $90,000 goal," Mallard said.

These successes mean that 7,500 people had happier holidays this season and will continue to be served throughout 2004 via these funds, Mallard said.

"In addition to the 849 families who got food, clothing and toys at Christmas, we were able to help thousands of others," Mallard said.

Sugarless candy and mugs went to 2,200 nursing home patients at Christmas. Toiletries and other necessary hygiene items were delivered to 2,400 prison inmates, Mallard said.

Fourteen kettles were out this year at Big Lots, Prime Outlets, Wal-Mart in the Centre at Hagerstown, Sam's Club, Kmart and Lowe's in Valley Plaza, Valley Mall sites including at the main entrance, the food court, J.C. Penneys, Sears and Hecht's and at Target and Michael's.

Mallard said last year's campaign was hurt by back-to-back winter storms and the loss of two kettle locations.

For more information on any of the Salvation Army programs, call 301-733-2440.

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