/R E P E A T -- Salvation Army Calls on Canadians to Support Christmas
Campaign in Final Week/

Kettles have collected $8 million in donations, halfway to $16 million goal

TORONTO, Dec. 17 /CNW/ - With just a few days left until Christmas, The Salvation Army is calling on Canadians, nationwide, to generously support its National Christmas Campaign. Christmas Kettles are currently at 50 percent of their final overall goal. To date, these Kettles have raised close to $8 million in donations, and they will need an additional $8 million if they are to meet the $16 million collected in 2008.

"We are relying on the generous support of Canadians everywhere to help us reach our goal of $16 million," said Andrew Burditt, Territorial Public Relations Director with The Salvation Army. "With strong support, we will be able to meet the growing number of clients requesting our services."

The Salvation Army estimates that client demand has increased by 10-40 percent across the country. Locally, The Salvation Army has seen recent spikes at feeding centres, food banks and Christmas hamper drives. Additionally, recent studies conducted by The Salvation Army have indicated an elevated need present amongst Canada's homeless and working poor. Each Kettle donation supports Canadians in need, many of whom have only recently faced unemployment and economic uncertainty.

"In the last 18 months there has been a dramatic shift in our economy, and this shift has impacted the resources of charitable organizations, like The Salvation Army," said Burditt. "Donations are critical for us at Christmas time and throughout the year. Last year's donations helped more than 1.5 million people gain access to programs providing food, shelter and family services."

Contributions to the 2009 Christmas Campaign can be made at your local kettle, online at www.SalvationArmy.ca, by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY (725-2769), by texting the word 'HOPE' to 45678 to make a $5.00 donation from any Rogers Wireless or Bell Mobility mobile phone. Standard text messaging rates will apply, and the amount will appear on the cellphone user's next bill. This service is provided by Mobile Marketing from Zipgive, a division of Zipstripe Corp. Donations can also be mailed to The Salvation Army, 2 Overlea Blvd, Toronto, ON M4H 1P4.

About The Salvation Army:

The Salvation Army is an international Christian organization that began its work in Canada in 1882 and has grown to become the largest non-governmental direct provider of social services in the country. The Salvation Army gives hope and support to vulnerable people today and everyday in 400 communities across Canada and 118 countries around the world. The Salvation Army offers practical assistance for children and families, often tending to the basic necessities of life, providing shelter for homeless people and rehabilitation for people who have lost control of their lives to an addiction. When you give to The Salvation Army, you are investing in the future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community.

News releases, articles and updated information can be found at www.SalvationArmy.ca

SOURCE The Salvation Army

For further information: For further information: Andrew Burditt, Territorial Public Relations Director, (416) 845-8231, andrew_burditt@can.salvationarmy.org, www.SalvationArmy.ca

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