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Salvation Army accepting applications for Christmas assistance program

Monday, October 31, 2011 | 4:57 p.m. CDT; updated 5:16 p.m. CDT, Monday, October 31, 2011

COLUMBIA — The Salvation Army in Columbia will take applications for its Christmas Assistance Program starting Nov. 7.

This year, the Salvation Army's goal is to help 300 families through its program, said Cyndy Chapman, regional director of development for the organization. Last year the program helped about 280 families, she said.

Families with children 17 or younger, individuals and seniors can apply, Chapman said. The program requires that participants provide proof of all income for the past 30 days, proof of current address and proof of regular school attendance for children 14 and older, according to a Salvation Army news release.

Applicants receive vouchers to grocery stores, which must be used by Christmas as they are meant for Christmas dinner, Chapman said. Applicants can also receive vouchers for coats if needed; families with children receive toys.

Chapman said the organization only turns families away if they have already signed up with another assistance program.

"People are very appreciative of the assistance," said Chapman, who has signed up and talked to families in the past. She said she remembers one family telling her, "We wouldn't have had a Christmas without your help."

The Salvation Army will accept applications:

  • Nov. 7 and 8, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m.
  • Nov. 10 and 11, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m.
  • Nov. 14 and 15, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m.
  • Nov. 17-18, from 9 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m.
  • Nov. 9, from 3 to 7 p.m.
  • Nov. 16, from 3 to 7 p.m.

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