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December 25, 2009

CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
(617) 961-6682


Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral (3rd from right) with Thomas Langdon, Director of Community Relations and Development for The Salvation Army – Massachusetts Division (far right) and members of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department.

Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral recently reprised her annual role as volunteer for The Salvation Army of Massachusetts by ringing the bell beside the organization’s famous red kettle.

Standing in Boston’s Downtown Crossing along with several members of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department, Sheriff Cabral rang the bell, handed out candy canes, and encouraged holiday shoppers and passersby to stop and give warmheartedly on an especially cold and blustery day.

“The Salvation Army is an organization that embodies the spirit of giving to those in need,” said Sheriff Cabral. “I am honored to be able to come out and help them in their efforts each year.”

Those efforts, according to Salvation Army literature, include the running of activities and programs for at–risk children, care and essential services for seniors, support of soup kitchens and transitional shelter for the homeless, and many others, all of which are greatly aided by the fundraising drive undertaken by “bellringers.”

The money raised by the “Red Kettle campaign,” which dates back to 1891 in San Francisco, benefits the communities in which the funds were collected. In seasons past, approximately $100 million has been raised annually to provide food, clothing, shelter, and toys for over six million people during the holiday season.

And, said Thomas Langdon, Director of Community Relations and Development for The Salvation Army – Massachusetts Division, with the current economic recession spurring a marked increase in the number of requests for assistance – the Cambridge Salvation Army Corps has seen a 62% rise in requests for assistance and other Corps report an alarming jump from 30% to 100% – every donation and every volunteer is critical.

“Ringing The Salvation Army bell is a way to give voice to folks who have no voice,” said Langdon. “It’s a way of calling attention to the needs of many individuals and families whose troubles and burdens too often go unnoticed. It’s a way of saying ‘I care’ to folks who wonder if anyone does care.”

“It was a pleasure once again to have Sheriff Cabral ringing the bell with us at The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle at Downtown Crossing,” continued Langdon. “As always, her enthusiasm was a magnet that drew folks to the kettle – and the candy canes she and her staff distributed brought smiles of surprise to passersby. It wasn’t enough that Sheriff Cabral rang the bell to call others to be generous, she brought a small treasure trove of coins that she had been collecting. The real thanks we extend to Sheriff Cabral are not the Army’s – they’re the thanks of all those whose lives will be brightened a bit by the help made possible through Kettle donations.”

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