Harrison mayor Leo Facio, Kent mayor Sylvia Pranger and organizer Rose Tustian (far right) at the Salvation Army kettle in Agassiz last winter. (Rose Tustian/Contributed)

Salvation Army kettles return to Agassiz

The holiday fundraiser will be back in town for the month of December

The cheerful sounds of the Salvation Army bells will be returning to Agassiz for a second year.

“I know that our community has people that are in need,” said Rose Tustian, resident and organizer of the local Christmas kettle campaign.

Tustian worked with the Salvation Army to bring the annual fundraiser back to the community last year, after many many years of silence. The endeavour was a success, she said.

“There were a lot of stories that came out from individuals,” she said. “They phoned me and they were telling me stories of how the Salvation Army had helped them when they had first come to Canada … Just when they were at their last legs, the Salvation Army kind of stepped in and gave them that leg up.

“So they wanted to now give back to the Salvation Army … so I thought it was really neat,” she continued. “It was quite touching actually.”

RELATED: Langley family runs annual Christmas toy drive in memory of son with an ‘old soul’

The Agassiz drive raised nearly $2,600 for the Salvation Army and saw around 20 volunteers come out each Saturday in December to ring the bells in front of SuperValu.

“Both mayors from Agassiz and Harrison, and councillors from both communities, rang the bells,” Tustian said.

This year, the fundraiser will be relocating to in front of Red Apple on Pioneer Avenue, to give senior volunteers a little more shelter from the elements during their two hour shifts.

Volunteers will be ringing the bells and collecting donations between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. every Saturday in December, although Tustian is hoping to start in late November if she can get enough volunteers.

“It would be nice if we could match what we did last year, or exceed what we did last year,” she added. “All the money goes right to people in need, so whatever people can give.”

Anyone interested in volunteering is invited to call Tustian at 604-316-4766.


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