The Salvation Army will accept applications for Christmas assistance next week.
Beginning Monday, Sept. 21, through Friday, Sept. 25, potential clients can apply at the Salvation Army’s Office at 2219 Main St. from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
The Salvation Army assists families with children by doing the Angel Tree every year, in which volunteers and members of the community shop for Christmas presents for needy children. Members of the community who are elderly or disabled may also receive food assistance from the Salvation Army a few days before Christmas.
Last year the Salvation Army in Columbus helped 215 families and gave toys and clothing to 503 children. The Salvation Army also looks for businesses, churches and organizations to do toy drives for children and gives away large stockings for individuals in the community to fill.
To fill out an application, clients must bring a picture identification, proof of all bills paid on a monthly basis for every member in the household, Social Security Card and birth certificates for all children 12-and-under in the household, and proof of guardianship. Clients must also bring proof of income for all members living in the household.
Major Cheryl Phillips, who organizes the Christmas assistance provided by the Salvation Army, says the process is to make sure only needy families and individuals get assistance from the organization and the community.
“We rarely turn people away unless it’s just an overabundance of wealth,” she said.
Families will be notified if they will receive assistance within a few weeks, after the Salvation Army and its volunteers have processed all the applications.
The ideal Christmas package for the children includes at least one full outfit and at a couple of different toys, Phillips said. She added that many of the children’s wish lists are specific to what that child likes, down to particular Disney characters, sports teams and types of toys.
The Salvation Army is also looking for volunteers to help take applications. To volunteer, call 662-327-5137.