For Hometown News
INDIAN RIVER COUNTY -- Walmart and the Salvation Army are partnering this Christmas season to help provide new toys and coats to local children on Christmas as part of the 122nd annual red kettle campaign.
The "Fill the Truck" toy drive will be hosted at the Vero Beach and Sebastian stores, along with more than 2,500 other Walmart stores across the country on Dec. 8.
In addition, Walmart and Sam's Club stores will host the Salvation Army's iconic red kettles and bell ringers this holiday season through Dec. 24 to collect much-needed funds to support the social service at Christmas and year round.
Last year in Indian River County, Walmart and Sam's Club stores helped the Salvation Army raise $115,000 locally and more than $46 million nationally, nearly one-third of the record $147.6 million raised.
All donations made to the red kettles will remain in Indian River County and help the Salvation Army provide food, clothing, shelter, financial assistance and other services to 2,000 people a year.
The "Fill the Truck" event will begin at 9 a.m. and run until 5 p.m. and is open to the general public who would like to donate new toys and coats to children who take part in the Salvation Army programs year round.
Upon arrival, shoppers will receive a list of suggested gifts to help fill the truck or bin at the store.
Once the donation receptacle is full, the Salvation Army will bring the donations to the Vero Beach Corps offices and distribute the gifts to local children in need. The collection is expected to provide gifts to more than 650 children.
This year, the Walmart Foundation also made a $1 million donation to the Salvation Army's red kettle campaign. The donation will be split among the four Salvation Army territories and support feeding programs, including meal programs for youths.
Last year, the Salvation Army helped serve 12,000 meals to local children and adults in need.
For more information, call (772) 978-0265.