CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — You can now make sure some underprivileged children have a merry Christmas without going to the stores to cross off items from their wish lists.
For just the second year, the Salvation Army of the Coastal Bend's Angel Tree program has an online option.
“I think online is the way to go, because a lot of people are doing online shopping," program participant and Salvation Army volunteer Cheryl Jason said. "And so it just makes it easier for people to get the help, and get in the holiday spirit, and to help the community.”
By visiting the charity's website and clicking the Registry for Good link, you'll be able to buy toys, games, and other gifts for children who might otherwise not have any presents to open this holiday season.
“Ten minutes is all it takes," Salvation Army of the Coastal Bend Community Relations and Development Director Monica Barrera said. "And it really does brighten a family. It brightens a child’s Christmas."
The traditional option will also be available.
Next week, the Salvation Army will place their Angel Trees at the information booth at La Palmera Mall and inside their Family Store just a block away along South Padre Island Drive.
Cards will hang from those trees with the wish lists of children whose parents enrolled them in the program.
Angel Tree registration is closed for this year, and unlike many of the previous 40 years of the program, the number of applicants was so large, there's no need for a second registration period.
"Our goal is to assist about 400 families," Barrera said. "So we want to invite the community to help us help them, and the way they can do that is either in-person or online."
Many of those families include multiple children.
So in all, the Angel Tree program serves around 1,500 children every year.
Jason has been helping out for several years now, because she likes sharing Christmas spirit with some families who could use a little assistance during a special time of year.
"They really want to have a magical holiday season," she said. "And so it’s more just about them and just bringing it out — letting them feel those emotions. I always feel when I’m done doing it that I’ve helped the community."