“Call the office,” McNeil said, “and speak to Linda Labbe or Katina Polemenako. Just ask either one of them about adopting a family for the Christmas season.”
“They can discuss what size family they’d like to adopt, how many children, maybe a certain situation. We try to match you with people who need assistance. We keep names confidential. There’s no interaction at all,” he said.
The Salvation Army’s mission extends beyond the holidays, to running a food pantry and covering basic needs like fuel assistance and warm clothes, and providing rent and utility assistance in emergencies.
That’s why it’s important to make donations, not only with the holidays in mind, but with an eye toward the work The Salvation Army does all year.
Readers of The Salem News can contribute through this newspaper, by sending a check made out to “Salvation Army Holiday Fund” to: ECN Holiday Fund, 32 Dunham Road, Beverly, MA 01915.
Since the ECN fund goes to several different areas, contributors should indicate in the memo line of the check, or in an enclosed note, which community they would like their contribution to go to: that covered by The Salem News, the Gloucester Daily Times or The Daily News of Newburyport.
McNeil said there are also online “kettles” where the Salvation Army accepts donations.
“To donate to the North Shore, go to www.onlineredkettle.org/northshore — that will keep it local with us,” he said.
McNeil also shared the message at the heart of The Salvation Army’s mission.
“We’re really a church, and we believe that Jesus is the reason for the season,” he said. “That’s our foundation, what we stand on.
“We’re here helping people with need without discrimination. We don’t care what their lifestyle is, or what life choices they’ve made. If they’re in need, we want to help them.”