Archive for the ‘Holiday News’ Category

Oklahoma City, Okla. (January 23, 2013) The Salvation Army’s 2012 Red Kettle Campaign raised $651,717 that will be used to aid the poor in the Central Oklahoma, officials announced today.

Canadian County

Cleveland County



2010 Actual





2011 Goal





2011 Actual





2012 Goal





2012 Actual





The amount exceeded the goal of $552,780, and surpassed the $645,848.22 amount the organization collected in 2011.

2011 2012
Volunteers 2,432 6400
Volunteer Hours 9,915 17,477

“We’re very grateful,” Major Dan Proctor, Central Oklahoma Area Commander said. “The increases in Canadian and Cleveland counties played a large role in the success of this year’s campaign. None of this would have been possible without the community’s support.”

Oklahomans not only gave of their resources in abundance this year, they also gave of their time in record amounts. We had 6,400 volunteers in 2012. An increase of 3,968 people from 2011, in which we had 2,432 volunteers. Volunteer hours increased by 7,562 hours. The total number of volunteer hours in 2012 was 17,477. The total amount of hours in 2011 was 9,915.

In another record, The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Program was able to assist 2,032 households, and 11,405 individuals. Donations and funds raised were used to provide area families with food, Angel Tree Program toys, and clothing during Christmas, Salvation Army officials said. Some of the funds will also be used to stock the organization’s food pantry, youth programs, outreach ministries, and other emergency needs.

“This year Oklahomans provided the finest, quality gifts ever,” said Major Francina Proctor, Associate Area Commander. “We have received an abundance of ‘thanks yous’ and hugs from families who experienced the joy of Christmas by your generosity. We are extending these words of thanksgiving from the single family homes, grandparents raising grandchildren, senior citizens, and even from a prisoner who wrote: Christmas can be a sad time for many as it highlights separation from loved ones. The love of Christ reflected through ministries such as yours helps to ease this pain, thank you and God bless you . Please know that your giving was appreciated and truly made a difference this Christmas. Thank you for remembering those who are lost, lonely and sometimes forgotten.”

A total of 84 Red Kettle stations were set up at various Central Oklahoma area businesses to collect donations though Dec. 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 Major Dan Proctor. “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.”

Highlights from this Christmas season are listed below:

– The organization’s Angel Tree program served more than 2,032 households, and 11,405 individuals through the Christmas season.

– OKC Thunder’s Rumble the Bison served as this year’s honorary Christmas chair.

– Yukon Homeland hosted the Kettle kickoff.

– Quail Springs Mall hosted the Angel Tree kickoff, with the Thunder Girls, and Kevin Ogle.

2011 2012
Volunteers 2,432 6400
Volunteer Hours 9,915 17,477

– We had 6,400 volunteers in 2012. An increase of 3,968 people from 2011, in which we had 2,432 volunteers. Volunteer hours increased by 7,562 hours. The total number of volunteer hours in 2012 was 17,477. The total amount of hours in 2011 was 9,915.

– The Salvation Army was able to assist 2,032 households, and 11,405 individuals.

– Landmark Homes had a Thankmas party at one of their model homes. They collected food and toys to benefit children in our program.

– McFarlin United Methodist Church in Norman sponsored several families, and took over 100 angels to place on their Church Angel Tree.

– The owners of the Sooner Bowl, the Hawes family, and their friends gathered food, toys, and clothing for six of our largest and most needy families.

– The Vance family sponsored 100 angels, and purchased food and clothing for them.

– The Fill the Truck Event at WalMart helped gather over 100 toys to be used in the Angel Tree program.

– Warmth4Winter Program in partnership with KFOR, South OKC Rotary, Comm. Brian Maughan’s office and The Salvation Army has collected thousands of coats for Oklahomans this winter.

– 830 Bicycles were distributed to children in need (Buck$ 4 Bikes). 220 volunteer bike assemblers including volunteers from Kiwanis, NW OKC Rotary, Oklahoma Bike Society, Southern Nazarene University and Church volunteers. Two tractor trailers of bikes from Huffy. $4,200 freight donated by Total Transportation Resources to deliver the new bicycles from Huffy.

– Partnership with Food & Shelter Inc. to have a Christmas party for clients in the combined shelters, as well as the homeless clients. Food & Shelter provided the gifts, and we provided the food. Joan and Richard Day sponsored the Shelter Christmas party.

– Special thanks to the Reeves family and Bob Staples, for their help with the Cleveland County distribution center. In addition, Dr. Lackey who donated the space, and Judy Hatfield of Equity Real estate for coordinating it.

– Paycom ’s generous $32,000 employee and company match Christmas donation

– Northpark Mall Big Night Out benefit

– Mid-America Christian University/Tyler Media, Thunder Toy drive.

– Chesapeake Energy’s Winter on Western Warmth4Winter Coat Drive

– Senior Christmas lunch


For the neediest children in Oklahoma County, the simple joys of a childhood summer may seem unattainable. These at-risk kids will spend their summer wandering the streets or hanging out with other idle kids… a recipe for trouble.

But The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command helps struggling local families avoid such an outcome for their children as The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma’s Boys & Girls Club summer day camp is in full swing.

The summer day camp, held from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Boys and Girls Club, 2808 SE 44th, runs through July 27. Already, more than 100 youth attend the club every day for activities like sports, outdoor recreation, computer lab, arts and crafts, reading, games and sports league practice.

Once a week, the youth also go to Eagle Harbor swimming pool and the Oklahoma City Boathouse, where they play on the playground and skate while the teens explore kayaking and canoeing.

“We are excited because we had full enrollment by May of this year for our summer camp,” said Megan Brown-Ellis, director of The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Boys & Girls Club. “We have more than 80 children ages 6 to 11 years old as well as two teen programs, Club Teen and Junior Staff.”

Several other special events are slated for the June summer camp. These include:

  • June 6 – Tobacco Prevention      Program from the Oklahoma City-County Health Department in the morning
  • June 8 – Health Fair with      Oklahoma City Health and Wellness in the afternoon
  • June 11 – 15: Vacation      Bible School through Child Evangelism Fellowship
  • June 19 – New View      Blindness Awareness designed to show children what it’s like to be blind      and how to assist blind Americans through hands-on activities.
  • June 20 – 22: OKC Barons      Hockey camp all day at the Club
  • June 26 – 27: Girl Scouts      from 10 to 11 a.m.

“Many of our children at camp are at-risk and qualify for free and reduced lunches. We have a much higher percentage of foster kids and single parent children attending our camp,” said Brown-Ellis. “Most of our parents are working parents, so The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club serves as a safe, educational and fun place for their children during the summer.”

In July, The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma will also offer a week-long residential camp at Camp Heart O’Hills in Tahlequah, a traditional outdoors summer camp. The camp is free to all enrolled.

Thanks to a partnership with The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, all camp attendees are provided breakfast, lunch and an afternoon snack at the day camp.

For more information about The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, contact Megan Brown-Ellis at 405-677-4781.

smileGo into any bookstore, any blog site and any lifestyles magazine, and you’ll find hundreds of books and articles about how to be happy.

Why is it so difficult for us as a nation to simply be happy? To appreciate all that our life offers and to maintain a smile in our hearts and joy in our souls.

For many, life is difficult. You and I both have times when we struggle financially or hit a down point or just get frustrated and angry. Even those we perceive as “rich” aren’t as happy as logic would dictate.
So what gives? What can we do to boost our joy and ramp up our appreciation for life.

There are ton of tips out there. Some of my favorite, which I try to practice every day, include:

* Practice Being Grateful. Loving and appreciating what you already have is a simple and fast way to improve your mood. I’m thankful that I have access to hot water each morning, I’m grateful that I have people in my life who love me, I’m grateful I have a satisfying job to go to and I’m grateful for my health.

* Choose Positivity. Henry Ford once said, “Whether you decide to succeed or fail, you are right.” When looking at any situation, try to find the positive road. Instead of saying “I can’t,” say “I can.” If something bad happens, focus on how to turn it around instead of dwelling on the awfulness. Always expect good things – don’t anticipate that only bad will happen.

sleep* Sleep more and exercise regularly. Hundreds of studies prove that getting a full, rested night sleep does wonders for mood and mental health. The average adult needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. Try to get into a routine of going to be bed at the same hour. Exercising at least 20 minutes a day (even a brisk walk) not only improves your overall health, but also relieves stress and simplu makes you feel good!

* Find Your Purpose in Life. People have a mission or goal – whether it’s starting a new hobby or losing 10 pounds or cultivating a relationship with God —  are happier than those who don’t work toward goals. Having a goal provides a sense of purpose, bolsters self-esteem and brings people together.

NOW HERE’S A BIGGIE: GIVE BACK TO YOUR COMMUNITY. Yes, volunteering and giving to help others is proven to make us happier overall.

volunteerAccording to a recent article on LiveScience, “New research reveals that when individuals dole out money for gifts for friends or charitable donations, they get a boost in happiness while those who spend on themselves get no such cheery lift. Elizabeth Dunn, a psychologist at the University of British Columbia, gave 46 students envelopes containing a either $5 bill or a $20 bill and told them how to spend it, those who shelled out on others (donating to charity or giving a gift) were happier at the end of the day than those who blew it on themselves (to pay a bill or indulge in a treat).”

The Salvation Army is blessed with volunteers and donors who willingly give to help others who are struggling with finances, food and happiness. Want to volunteer? We’d love to have you!!! Give yourself the gift of happiness while giving others the gift of security and health.

Please feel free to call us at any time at 405-246-1100.

Members with Leadership OKC help The Salvation Army beat the $600,000 goal in 2011 for the Red Kettle Campaign.

We are thrilled to report that the 2011 Kettle Goal of $600,000 was surpassed thanks to your generosity!
This year, with your support, we raised $650,747 in Oklahoma, Cleveland and Canadian Counties.

As you know, our needs are greater than ever. It’s been an extremely difficult year for many of our neighbors. Here at The Salvation Army, requests for help are up dramatically.

On average, The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Commands provides hope and aid to 160,000 people right here in Central Oklahoma, as well as over 300,000 meals annually.

We need your help to:

* Provide food to hungry families
* Support our Salvation Army youth and children at our two Boys and Girls Clubs
* Shelter the homeless who come to us with nowhere else to turn
* Provide emergency items like clothing, furniture and other basics
* Serve all those in need with compassion and care.

Please consider donating online for a one-time gift or, even better, set up your monthly gift to sustain Oklahomans in need all year long.

For The Salvation Army Christmas Distribution, 2,000 families will receive Angel Tree gifts, toiletry items and a Christmas meal. The centerpiece of the meal is delicious Christmas turkey, ham, roast or chicken.

We’ve been so blessed by generous donations from our Feed the Children, many friends, The Regional Food Bank and Sydney Frank Importing, but we are running short and some families run the risk of not being able to receive meat.

Our families and seniors are still in need of about 1,000 pieces of meat.

So, with humble hearts, we ask that our friends can spare $5, $10, $20 or however much your heart can give to help The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma make sure every family gets a meal on Christmas Day. Your donation can mean:

Turkey $12

Ham $10

Roasting Chicken $8

Please visit this link to make a donation online.

When you give online, please send an email to so that we can make sure the funds are designated specifically to the Central Oklahoma Area Command Christmas Meat Drive.

Donors can also call 1-800-SAL-ARMY and request their donation to go purchase meat in Central Oklahoma as well.

You can also mail a check to:

The Salvation Army

Attn: Jeanean Castle / Christmas Meat

P. O. Box 2095

Oklahoma City, OK 73101

Again, we thank you for your continued support in this tough economy. MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Special Limited Presale!

THE ADDAMS FAMILY, January 17-22, at the Oklahoma City’s Civic Center Music Hall, is offering a pre-sale special ending Sunday at midnight. By using the coupon code: FAMILY, $5 from every presale ticket sold benefits The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command! Up to $5,000!

WELCOMED BY ONEOK, the weird and wonderful family comes to devilishly delightful life in THE ADDAMS FAMILY. This magnificently macabre new musical comedy is created by Jersey Boys authors Marshall Brickman & Rick Elice, Drama Desk-winning composer/lyricist Andrew Lippa (The Wild Party), choreographer Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys) and Olivier Award-winning director/designers Phelim McDermott & Julian Crouch (Shockheaded Peter) with creative consultation by four-time Tony® Award winner Jerry Zaks.

This is definitely not the same old song and dance. It’s every parent’s nightmare. Your little girl has suddenly become a young woman, and what’s worse, has fallen deliriously in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family. Yes, Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has a “normal” boyfriend, and for parents Gomez and Morticia, this shocking development will turn the Addams house downside up.

It’s a family portrait that’s completely off the wall.

Click here to purchase pre-sale tickets to this quirky comedy and $5 will benefit The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma!!!

Tickets go on sale to the public on Monday, 12/12.

Salvation Army Majors Margaret Kennell and Francina Proctor help kick off the 2011 Red Kettle Campaign along with The Oklahoma City Thunder’s Rumble the Bison!


The 2011 Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Red Kettle Campaign kicked off Nov. 25, and hundreds of locations in Central Oklahoma will host Salvation Army Bell Ringers this Christmas season.

However, collections for the Red Kettle are $7,500 lower this year than they were this same time last year.

 The Salvation Army uses the donations to the Red Kettles for services to the Central Oklahoma area, capped off by its Christmas assistance program. The kick-off event, held Nov. 25 at Norman I-35 Walmart, featured Salvation Army officers and bellringers as well as Oklahoma’s largest Red Kettle, the Oklahoma City Thunder Mascot Rumble the Bison and the Salvation Army ensemble.

The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command includes Canadian, Cleveland and Oklahoma Counties.

“Our goal this year is to raise $599,768 total for all three counties,” said Area Commander Major Dan Proctor. “Last year, we were so blessed that the community beat the 2010 goal of $433,000, and we hope once again, citizens will donate their pocket change to help make a real difference to those suffering.”

 The Army has increased its services due to higher demand and needs to bring in more than last year to meet the goal. By county, this year’s goals are $28,727  for Canadian County, $106,261  for Cleveland County and $464,780 for Oklahoma County. 

 Throughout the past several years, The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma continues to see an increase in services. The Salvation Army depends upon bellringing and other fundraising efforts throughout the Christmas season for 20 percent of its fiscal year budget.

 “What we really need is for more service clubs, volunteer organizations, college students, community leaders, church Sunday School classes, families or individuals to commit to covering a location for a day or two, or half-days for smaller groups. Many clubs or groups have helped in the past and may even consider raising their own bar to help even more, perhaps covering a longer day or a second day. This would be so very helpful,” said Major Proctor.

 The Salvation Army will once again provide toys and clothes to 2,000 families in Central Oklahomaas well. Gifts will also be given to nursing home residents.

The Salvation Army and its officers are deeply committed to carrying out its ministry not only during the holiday season, but year round, said Major Proctor.

“Although our visibility is more heightened during the holidays, it is important that the community knows that our programs are ongoing,” said Major Proctor.  “We all need to come together to revitalize and strengthen the core of our local community by offering support any way we can.“ 

To volunteer to help with the bell ringing or for more information about Christmas programs, call  Lois Green at 405-246-1100. Paid bell ringing positions are also available, although volunteers are preferred.

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The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command’s annual Thanksgiving Holiday Brunch once again filled the hall of the Bricktown Coca-Cola Event Center with hundreds of hungry souls and generous volunteers to celebrate the fellowship of mankind.

Hope you enjoy the photos from this year’s event!

On Thanksgiving morning, nearly 1,200 people line the sidewalk in front of The Coca-Cola Event Center in Oklahoma City in the chilly air for one reason only – to eat.

The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command hosts a city-wide Thanksgiving breakfast every year for those who have no families or no place to go on the holiday. Hundreds of volunteers help serve a traditional breakfast to those who attend, but The Salvation Army also provides groceries every day, every month to families who are in distress.

In 2010-11, The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma handed out 27,289 grocery orders to families who could not afford to buy food that month. Senior citizens and the disabled come to The Salvation Army on Fridays to receive sustaining food.

As you can imagine, that’s a lot of groceries that we hand out throughout the year. But, the holidays pose a unique challenge. How can a family working several jobs and still struggling to pay the bills afford a holiday meal like turkey, stuffing and all the fixings?

By partnerships with you and with local businesses. Honeysuckle White through Cargill Meats provided vouchers for 150 turkeys, The House FM is holding a series of events in Oklahoma City called Turkey 4 Tunes, Exclusive Wireless is collecting non-perishable food and citizens like you are collecting food for charity as well.

How do you know what to give though? The Salvation Army Charitable food drives can include food donations, household items and pet products. Knowing some of the common guidelines and restrictions of food pantries can help you make the most of your donation. 

Ideas for Food Items:

· We respectively request donations of nutritious food that are shelf stable, no fresh or frozen, like:

* Canned or dried fruit and vegetables

* Canned tomotoes and pasta sauce

* Shelf stable fruit cups and juice boxes

* Protein sources like canned or dried beans, canned meats, peanut butter and nuts

* Whole grain food items like whole grain pasta, whole grain crackers, oatmeal, cereals, brown rice and other useful foods like canned stew, canned or box soups, dry milk and baby food.

 Ideas for Household Goods

· We also accept basic household items. Frequently needed bathroom items include toilet paper, shampoo, soap, toothpaste and toothbrushes. Other useful household items include dishwasher detergent, laundry detergent and dish soap.

 Potential Restrictions

· Food pantries have different guidelines for what they will accept. Some only accept food, while others will also accept non food items. The Salvation Army will not accept over-the-counter medications, vitamins, herbal supplements or recently expired food.

Tips for Shopping

 · There are several ways to make your hard earned money go further. First, buy in quantity, but not in bulk. Warehouse stores have good values when you buy large quantities, but a 128 oz. can of diced tomatoes is too much for one family. Try buying a 10 pack of 14 oz. tomatoes instead. Second, buy nutritious foods. Snack foods don’t provide many nutrients; fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains are better choices. Finally, buy generic. For the most part, generic and store brands of foods and household goods have the same ingredients as name brands, but they are much cheaper – sometimes less than half the price.

To host your own food drive, call The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma at 405-246-1100.


More than 658 bicycles were delivered to The Salvation Army Nov. 3 to help make hundreds of children's Christmas dreams come true through the Angel Tree program.

At 8 a.m. Nov. 3, two Old Dominion Freight Lines 18-wheelers rolled silently through the streets of Midwest City, Oklahoma, to deliver a cargo that would make dreams come true for children in Central Oklahoma.

Filled with more than 650 bicycles, these trucks hauled their load from Huffy on the East Coast to The Salvation Army Central Oklahoma’s Christmas Distribution Center in Midwest City for free, donating the use of their trucks to help make Christmas a joy for even the most poverty-stricken child.

During the summer, The Salvation Army’s Women’s Auxiliary set out counter top Red Kettles in more than 60 businesses in the metro area. For the month of July, residents donated a dollar or two, but at the end of the month, more than $24,000 had been raised to purchase bicycles for children on The Angel Tree.

“Every year, hundreds of children dream of a new bike at Christmas,” said D’Anna Pulliam, Salvation Army Women’ Auxiliary. “Every year, we try to fill every child’s wish, but sometimes, not all children can get that bike. The goal of Buck$ 4 Bikes is to raise money so that every child who dreams of a new bike can get one.”

The Salvation Army Angel Tree features 2,000 families this year. The children and elderly of that family are placed on paper Angels, along with their most hopeful wish for Christmas, and the public “adopts” those Angels to shop for. This year, The Salvation Army Angel Tree will be at both Penn Square Mall and Quail Springs Mall with space donated by both.

“This is the most amount of money we’ve raised for bikes,” said Pulliam. “So many more needy children will have their Christmas wishes come true.”

On Dec. 19-21, The Salvation Army will distribute the gifts to the families… this year, many more children will have Christmas dreams come true.