Creating Christmas for those in need

Published 3:16 pm Saturday, December 22, 2018

By Dawn Burleigh

The Orange Leader


Volunteers gathered as the big day they had worked so hard for had finally arrived on Thursday – Distribution Day at Salvation Army in Orange.

Members of the Service League of Orange as well as Granger Chevrolet’s Grangettes, Granger Rangers and Elf Ralph Mims as well as Salvation Army Board members were on hand to help with the distributing the gifts and food collected for this moment.

“These are for children who get nothing from their parents, just what we give,” Theresa Glidden said.

Glidden, president of the Service League of Orange, said this was her third year helping at Salvation Army. She said she had spent the three previous days helping sort and set up for the day.

“Each card tells the age, gender, size of clothes of the child,” Glidden said. “Then something the child wishes for and something they need. Every child needs winter clothes. We try to give every child a coat.”

Glidden said they always try to give the child what they ask for and then more.

“It is going to be a very good Christmas this year,” Glidden added. “The Service League worked pretty hard for this.”

Salvation Army Board member Betty Harmon said the support this year is overwhelming.

“Churches are still showing up this morning [Thursday] with donations,” Harmon said. “And the plants, the industries… it’s overwhelming every year. This year they will be getting much more than they asked for.”

One such company, International Paper, was able to provide gifts for approximately 325 children through the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program this year. This was their first year to organize an Angel Tree at their plant, and the staff way exceeded the original thought of providing for 25 Angels. 

The annual Toy Coffee hosted by Service League of Orange County is held each December to help the Salvation Army and children of Orange County.

The event has raised approximately $30,000 and over 4,000 toys for Orange County children in the last eight years.

The event is held annually by the Service League of Orange, which was founded in 1954. The first Toy Coffee was held in 1956 and has been going strong every year since then.