New River Valley Salvation Army hosts Angel Tree program for seniors

CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. – At Angel Tree locations across the New River Valley, you’ll notice some with specific images of an angel. That means it’s the wish list of seniors who could use a little extra love this Christmas.

When it comes to the holidays, the focus usually stays on toys and children, but Salvation Army Captain Charlene Cover is looking to make a difference in a different group.

Cover sees the need in the local senior population year-round.

“They are the ones that get the least benefits. They are the ones that get the least everything,” Cover said.

That’s why the salvation army of the new river valley expanded its Angel Tree program to seniors.

“We have been around the five counties that we serve taking applications of seniors and just to see the joy of them telling them what they want for Christmas,” Cover said.

On their list this year are two excited recipients in Giles County: Patricia Whittaker and her husband of 53 years.

“When you are a senior just the least little teeny thing makes you happy to get,” Whitaker said.

Like many other seniors, they’re asking for practical gifts like groceries, clothing, or toiletries.

Her daughter Christy Price was excited to sign her parents up for the program.

“They usually don’t have much for Christmas and this way they can have something for Christmas and I was really excited for them,” Price said.

“It was really exciting because we had never done anything like that before,” Whittaker said.

Whittaker said she is thankful for the program and those who are making her holiday a little brighter.

“The ones that will donate and everything. They will get a thank you from God for giving. That’s the most important. God does thank other people for helping people like us,” she said.


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