Time to give back, say Salvos

The Umina Beach Salvos want the community’s help

After a year of bushfires, drought and COVID-19, the Umina Beach Salvos are asking the community to give back and donate to their annual Christmas Appeal.

The Salvation Army aims to raise $12M this year for Aussie families who can’t afford food, clothes, and the simple necessities over the Christmas period.

Umina Salvos Captain Lesley Newton said Christmas was a busy time with an even bigger demand for their services this year due to ongoing challenges of 2020.

“After the devastating year that has been, it is more important than ever to look out for one another, to connect with each other and embrace the true meaning of Christmas,” Newton said.

“We will see people asking for help who have never asked for help before, and we have found that many people have struggled so much with lack of income and losing their jobs.

“To come out and ask for assistance, when you have lived your whole life and never had to ask for help is incredibly hard to do.

“For those who can show support, we would ask you to help our appeal or any other local welfare centre this Christmas, to help make a little bit of a difference by donating your time, a gift, or money is really significant.”

The Salvation Army will give out more than 30,000 hampers and $1.3M worth of gifts and toys this Christmas.

They will also support more than 50,000 families in need, give out more than 130,000 meals, provide 65,000 beds and provide more than 7,000 families with accommodation.

Newton said the Umina Salvos had also provided Christmas toy rooms for parents to choose gifts for their children.

“When we receive donated toys, we set up a toy room where parents can come and choose their gifts each year, and we give them that dignity to be able to choose for their children, which makes such a huge difference,” she said.

“I guess one of the things we try to do is bring some happiness into a year that’s been full of confusion and sadness.

“We don’t want anyone to go it alone this year, if you need food, gifts, financial support or are feeling lonely, please get in touch with us.

“Anyone in need this Christmas can reach out by popping into our office at 9 Sydney Ave, Umina Beach, each Wednesday in November, and we’ll do all we can to support you.”

Hayley McMahon