Christmas is just under four months away, but the Salvation Army is already getting ready to make a list.

It may not be checked twice, but to goal is to make sure that, at Christmastime, local underprivileged kids and seniors get something nice.

That’s how the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program, which will begin registering families later this month, works after all.

“Pre-registration (is coming up) for The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree, an annual program that provides clothing and toys for needy children and seniors at Christmastime,” Salvation Army officials said in an announcement.

This year marks 40 years since the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program was begun in Lynchburg, Va. It has spread across the country since then to become a way for local communities to help provide Christmas gifts for people in need.

“The Salvation Army of Metro Atlanta’s Angel Tree program helps make Christmas brighter for about 10,000 children and seniors each year, “ Salvation Army MEtro Atlanta Area Command spokeswoman Nichole Owens said. “This year’s program runs from Nov. 22 through Dec. 6.”

Trees will be placed at shopping malls and more than 200 corporations, churches and other organizations. The Salvation Army’s metro Atlanta division’s goal is to once again help at least 10,000 children through the Angel Tree program this year, according to

“Each year, thousands of families throughout metro Atlanta aren’t able to provide Christmas gifts for their children,” officials at the organization said. “The Salvation Army’s annual Angel Tree program pairs needy children (‘angels’) with generous donors who shop for these children at Christmas.”

Pre-registration for the Angel Tree program will take place daily from 9 a.m. until noon and from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. starting Sept. 23 and ending Sept. 28.

The sign-up will be done at the Salvation Army of Gwinnett County office at 3455 Sugarloaf Parkway in Lawrenceville.

The Salvation Army has guidelines that lay out what types of documents are needed to sign up for the Angel Tree program, as well as what the income limits are depending on how many people there are in a family. The maximum eligible family income for a family of four, for example, is $34,850, according to

“Parents who wish to pre-register their children for Angel Tree must apply in person,” Salvation Army officials said. “Please bring a valid photo I.D., proof of residence, and proof of need, or proof of monthly expenses and all income sources.”

Additional information about requirements can be found at

Community members who are interested in volunteering for work with the Salvation Army on the Angel Tree program can contact Salvation Army of Metro Atlanta Volunteer Coordinator Donna Roper at

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta and eventually wandered to the University of Southern Mississippi for college. Earned a BA in journalism (double minor in political science and history). Previously worked in Florida and Clayton County.

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