EAST ORANGE, NJ — The Salvation Army kicked off its annual Red Kettle Holiday Fundraising Drive at a special ceremony inside East Orange’s City Hall rotunda on Monday, Nov. 14. The event featured a performance by the Cicely Tyson School seventh- and eighth-grade chorus, directed by Troy Bell.
“I’m just so proud, honored and privileged to be in this position, to provide opportunities for everybody in our community,” said East Orange Mayor Lester Taylor on Monday, Sept. 14, before he took money out of his pocket and donated it to the Salvation Army. “I want to thank everyone for coming out and supporting a very good cause.”
“Last year, we made history, because it was the first time in the history of the great city of East Orange that we had the kickoff for the Kettle Drum right here in the rotunda of City Hall,” said Goldie Burbage, the chairwoman of the Salvation Army’s board of directors, on Monday, Nov. 14. Burbage, who is also the president of the Historical Society of East Orange, a member of the East Orange General Hospital’s board of directors and several other committees, added that the the Salvation Army will host its annual Pre-Thanksgiving Community Dinner at the Salvation Army facility on Main Street on Sunday, Nov. 20, at 2 p.m., and everyone from the town and surrounding communities is invited to attend.
“Contribute your time; contribute your effort. If you have food or any donation that you would like to make for the Salvation Army, please feel free to do that,” Burbage said. “We’re so glad the fire department is always on hand. They roast the turkeys for us and they come and serve. We certainly want volunteers from the community to feel free to come in and help us on (Sunday, Nov.) 20 at 2 p.m. and help us serve the residents for our community Thanksgiving dinner.”
According to Burbage, the East Orange Salvation Army is also in the midst of a membership drive. The only qualification to participate, she said, is a desire to serve the community.
“I’d like to invite anyone of you who would like to become a member of the Salvation Army to come over, sign up,” said Burbage. “We meet the third Monday of the month at 5:30 p.m., right at the Salvation Army, located right here on Main Street.
“If people want to volunteer, too, it’s all on our homepage,” said Salvation Army Envoy Capt. Scott See on Tuesday, Nov. 15. “It’s expected to be a difficult Christmas, so anyone that wants to donate a toy or their time, the Salvation Army would greatly appreciate it. We’re grateful that the city allowed us to have the Kettle kickoff right there in City Hall, because it highlights the need in the city and we want to get the word out to as many people as possible.”
To learn more about the Salvation Army, visit http://www.salvationarmyusa.org/ or call 973-672-0262.