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Red Kettle campaign needs local ringers

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With less than one month to go until Christmas the Salvation Army in St. Croix County

is in need of a lot of help.

The area Red Kettle campaign has raised approximately $18,000 so far this campaign. We need to raise $100,000 in St. Croix County to meet the needs of individuals and families in the community.

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The Salvation Army helps to provide local individuals and families in need. Of the money donated in St. Croix County, 89 percent of those dollars stay in St. Croix County.

"This year has been a very tough economic year as it is followed by several previous years of economic crisis," said Duana Bremer, Salvation Army coordinator. "Many people have not found work yet and our struggling to make ends meet. Many who have never sought help before are suddenly looking for help. Imagine, this could be someone you know, who for the first time will seek help this year and they may seek it from the Salvation Army."

The money raised during the Red Kettle campaign and through other donations provides

rent assistance, utilities, transportation and medical assistance to families and individuals in need. The Salvation Army also provides milk coupons to the food pantries in the county that are redeemable at local merchants along with the highly utilized "Happy Kids Backpack Program" which provides over

175 families throughout the county with a backpack full of food once a week who are currently on the free or reduced lunch program.

The Salvation Army in St. Croix County also operates one mass shelter in Somerset called Grace Place. Currently the home is housing 24 individuals and there is always a waiting list. There is also a family shelter located in Osceola that can provide housing for one family.

Said Bremer, "During the Christmas season many will look for ways to give. The Salvation Army

is a perfect opportunity to give to those in need, while being assured that your dollars

will stay in the community."

Bremer added that if the Salvation Army is unable to meet its goal, there will not be enough funds to help those who are in the most need. "Not just during Christmas but, throughout the year."

If taking a turn manning a red kettle doesn't work, tax deductible donations can be sent to: Salvation Army 203 Church Hill Rd. Somerset, WI 54025. Anyone able to volunteer a couple hours as a bell ringer can call (715)485-1221 to set up a time to ring or sign up on line by going to ringbells.org.

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