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The Salvation Army helps bring some Christmas cheer

26 November 2010

In December 2009, The Salvation Army delivered a Christmas gift initiative to people whose homes were lost or severely damaged in the Black Saturday fires.

These were distributed to residents through The Salvation Army’s four bushfire recovery centres, located at Seymour, Whittlesea, Traralgon and Healesville.

The initiative was very well received by residents going through a difficult time of having Christmas without loved ones or their homes, as well as being confronted by another bushfire season and the first anniversary of Black Saturday.

Garrison Pearse, Bushfire Projects Manager with The Salvation Army, said that demand for the Christmas gift was so high that one relief centre had to replenish its supplies within only a few days of the launch. The Whittlesea Bushfire Recovery Centre reported seeing over 50 clients each day in relation to the initiative.

Bushfire recovery teams worked tirelessly to distribute the Christmas gifts and were deeply touched by the feedback given by recipients. Many recipients were emotional and all were extremely grateful. They also passed on their thanks to everyone who donated to The Salvation Army’s bushfire appeal in early 2009 and made the Christmas gift possible.

Around $1.5 million was assigned to the initiative, which provided some respite at a difficult time for many families.

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The Salvation Army acknowledges the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and recognises their continuing connection to land, waters and community. We pay our respects to them and their cultures; and to elders both past and present.

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