The best part of the holidays is giving and the Salvation Army, Burbank Corps, has several opportunities to make local children’s spirits brighter this Christmas season.
Volunteers are needed to take shifts for the Salvation Army’s “Angel Tree” Project.
Chair Elaine Paonessa is recruiting adults and teens to sit with the Angel Tree at the Burbank Town Center on the third floor near the Burlington Coat Factory store.
Customers select an Angel Tree card with specific information on a child and what is on his or her wish list. The customer purchases an item and returns it with the card to the Angel Tree location. The Salvation Army then distributes the gift to the child’s family just before Christmas.
Volunteers are needed to give a minimum of two-hour shifts between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Nov. 28 through Dec. 23. To participate, call Paonessa at (818) 845-6851.
“I have a lot of women and couples that have given hours to this project in the past and they come back every year, but there is always room for more volunteers,” Paonessa said.
This project is also an opportunity for local students looking for ways to receive community service hours.
“The Burbank High School Key Club members are regularly involved with the project and they receive community service hours,” she said.
Local businesses, like Thorburn Chiropractic, place Angel Tree cards on their office holiday tree each year, Paonessa said, and clients purchase gifts and return them to the business. Salvation Army volunteers pick up donations.
The Salvation Army helps hundreds of children and their families have a happier Christmas by collecting food, clothing and toys. For more information on Salvation Army programs, call (818) 845-7214.
Another holiday program of the Salvation Army is the Bike Angels, which provides new or refurbished bicycles to underprivileged children each year. Last year 150 bikes were provided to local children, Paonessa said.
“Under the leadership of Elaine Pease, many city employees, families and friends have spent endless hours refurbishing the used bicycles and assembling the new ones,” Paonessa said. Along with the bicycles, youngsters receive helmets.
To donate bicycles that are new or that need to be refurbished, call Pease at (818) 238-5286.