BALTIMORE — The Salvation Army of Central Maryland is seeking more volunteers to help complete this year's Angel Tree family adoption program. Because of COVID-19 the organization is seeing less volunteers.
"We are in need of volunteers to sort these presents," said Lt. Aniono Willis. "As individuals are sending in these toys, we are needing volunteers to sort them to ensure that they go to the right families which the donor intended them for. As of right now, we are running behind."
According to the organization, the next two weeks are critical for Operation Rescue Christmas. Locally, this year's digital Angel Tree program has been a success.
On Monday, The Salvation Army's warehouse was overflowing with packages received through the mail. What was missing was the usual army of volunteers.
"It's definitely slow, for sure," said Lauren Novsak with Business Volunteers Maryland. "Usually, folks are here in matching t-shirts from their company. Sometimes folks will bring their kids. But this year, obviously, there's no children involved. It's a lot quieter."
Novsak told WMAR-2 News there would normally be 100 volunteers per shift. Now, if she's lucky, there's about 40. Those who are giving their time are working harder to make up for the lack of man power.
"It's really easy," said Novsak. "We show you what to do when you come down and you pick it up in 5 minutes. Everything is spelled out for you."
The Salvation Army of Central Maryland's Angel Tree Project will serve 1,866 families throughout Baltimore City and Baltimore County. Of those families, 4,389 children will be serviced.
The warehouse is a 29,000 square foot space. Personal protective equipment is available for those who come down and safety guidelines are in place.