Moose FM’s two Muskoka stations wrapped our annual Christmas Radiothons with a record $212,218 raised for the local Salvation Army.
After 24 hours on air between Thursday and Friday, 99.5 Moose FM Bracebridge raised $175,791 for Salvation Army South Muskoka Ministries, while a 12 hour stint at 105.5 Moose FM Huntsville raised $36,427 for Salvation Army Huntsville on Friday.
Lieutenants April and Brandon Keeping with the South Muskoka branch say they’re blown away by the support.
“I think the turnout was amazing. It was amazing to see people physically come into the building, but also just the number of calls. It’s a long haul, two twelve-hour days, but it’s consistent and I’m really pleased with that,” says April.
Salvation Army Huntsville’s Major Neil Evenden says it was a great turnout, and about what was needed.
“We’re feeling really good,” says Evenden. “Numbers look a little bit up from last year. It’s a significant amount of money, and that’s going to help us to go through the winter months and into the next year.”
According to Evenden, the money goes towards keeping the lights on in the coming year, as well as adding some fresh produce to their 351 Christmas hampers, a new record.
“We’ll use it to buy food, especially fresh fruit, vegetables,” says Evenden. “Potatoes, apples, carrots, protein, all those sorts of things. Our Christmas hamper program costs us about $40,000, so it’s significant to go towards that.”
In South Muskoka, Brandon says the money is used to keep not only the food bank running, but other services as well. “The money goes towards everything that we do all year round,” he says, adding that could be sending kids to camp, helping with living arrangements, or buying basic necessities for people. “Anything and everything that people identify as a need, we will help them out with it.”
Both the Keepings and Evenden are thanking the community and all those that support them this time of year, not just through the radiothon.
“We are so humbled by the generosity of the people of Muskoka,” says Brandon. “It is classic Canadians that we gather together to take care of each other. And to be on the receiving end so that we can go out and do what we were called to do, to help others, we’re just so grateful. Of a community that will support what we do, and our volunteers, our congregation members, our staff.”
“The Salvation Army is so thankful to the community and all those that come alongside us in the Christmas season,” says Evenden. “That assist us, and stand on kettles, and volunteer, and give resources, money, food. In Porchlight, the firefighters were great. We just want to wish everybody a very, very Merry Christmas.”