Salvation Army kicks off Christmas kettle campaign with $1.5M from President
The Salvation Army received $1.5 million from the government on Friday to kickstart its annual Christmas Kettle fundraising activity and keep its humanitarian work going.
The Salvation Army’s Divisional Commander, Major Matignol Saint-Lot said funds are needed now more than ever as the need for help among the less fortunate has increased due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the rise in the cost of living.
President Dr Irfaan Ali handed over the cheque to the organisation at the Georgetown Club and applauded the Salvation Army for their tremendous work in Guyana.
“A lot of people associate Christmas with giving but giving cannot be a seasonal activity. It is not only about the Christmas kettle; it is a way of life. It is giving every single day in different ways. It is lifting humanity in different ways,” President Ali said.
The Salvation Army Advisory Board President Edward Boyer, during brief remarks, said the organisation supports the government’s recognition and development of all social groups including the poor, less fortunate, women and indigenous people.
“For me and a number of people across the world the first sight of the Salvation Army kettle signifies the advent of the joys of Christmas and the Christmas season,” Boyer said.
The organisation provides service to senior citizens at the Salvation Army Home, provides care packages to various institutions, delivers 100 meals daily to the homeless and elderly and has saved the lives of many drug addicts through its drug rehab programme.
Ramo Lall was supported through these efforts 16 years ago. Lall who had been a drug addict for 28 years is now a business owner.
“Today, I am so thankful to the Salvation Army because they saved my life. I got to the Salvation Army Rehab Centre more dead than alive and I went through the rehab, thank God I was successful and everything went well,” Lall related.
He added: “I always felt that I could have used and enjoyed life like everyone else but that was not so, I suffered for 28 long years and today I am almost 16 years clean.”
Lall spent a few years giving back to the Rehab Centre and then moved on with his life.