More than 400 gently used Christmas trees have been donated to The Salvation Army as part of the second annual artificial tree trade-in program with Treetime Christmas Creations of Lake Barrington. During the month of October, the two organizations teamed up to encourage Chicago and Milwaukee-area residents to donate their artificial trees for families in need. In turn, the generous donors received up to a 15 percent discount toward purchase of a new tree at Treetime Christmas Creations.
The Salvation Army will distribute the gently used trees to area families or sell them in thrift stores to benefit Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers. Some of the first families from Chicago’s suburbs accepted their donated Christmas trees at an event this week at the Treetime Christmas Creations showroom, while other Chicago and Milwaukee families will receive their artificial Christmas tree later this month.
“Thanks to Treetime Christmas Creations, hundreds of families in need will not have to go without a Christmas tree this year,” said Envoy Dennis Earnhart of The Salvation Army Metropolitan Division. “And these trees will bring them joy for many years to come. Thousands of families across the city and suburbs who are struggling financially just to get by will receive a food basket, a toy, a coat or gift for their children from The Salvation Army this year. We are extremely grateful to Treetime for additionally blessing them with a donated Christmas tree under which to place those toys and to bring the joy of the season into their hearths and hearts.”
Treetime Christmas Creations recognized there are area families that don’t have the financial means to purchase a Christmas tree and wanted to lend a hand. The Salvation Army has more than 5,000 Chicago area families that regularly visit their local retail stores for household items to make ends meet, and many have to go without decorations for the holiday.
“After introducing the program for the first time in 2011, we were overwhelmed by the eagerness of area residents to give back to others by donating artificial trees that have brought them joy over the years,” commented Joe Kane of Treetime Christmas Creations. “Working alongside The Salvation Army has given us a real insight to the strong need that exists among area families who are struggling, yet still want to celebrate the holidays at home.”
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 89 cents of every dollar spent is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salarmychicago.org.