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Advance America ready to help at the holidays PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 November 2017 12:43

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ELLY GRIMM
• Leader & Times



For many families with few resources, the holidays can be a tough time in terms of preparing a family meal and getting presents for loved ones. 

Advance America in Liberal is wanting to help with just that and is currently having a toy and good drive at its location at 204 Parkway Blvd. The drive will last until Dec. 22. 

“With this business, and we are a payday loan, our whole motto here is we’re here to help,” Advance America Manager Tatiana Alcala said. “It’s not necessarily a loan like someone comes in and says ‘Hey, I need money,’ sometimes things happen or pop up, or maybe your paycheck came a bit short so you need some extra help to make your rent or house payment. We’re here to help, you never know when you’ll need that extra help, so we figured for this year, how about we do it where it doesn’t benefit the company, but it benefits others. Of course we’re here to help with financial needs, and a little goes a long way. Just because someone comes in because they needed a loan because they needed to make rent or maybe something came up that bit into what was going to be used for Christmas gifts or something like that. We want to make it to where we can help – sometimes people are afraid to ask for help when they need it, and that’s why we want to make it anonymous.”

For food, Alcala said staff is looking for non-perishable items and will also be accepting all types of toys for the toy side of the drive. 

“We’re wanting to collect non-perishable foods like stuffing or bags of cookies, stuff like that,” Alcala said. “We also spoke with Walmart and they’re going to give a gift card worth $50, I believe, so we can get some food from there like a couple turkeys. We want to be able to feed at least two families. From Dillons, we’ve been reaching out to them and I believe they’re also going to be giving a gift card so we can also get food from there. With the toys, we’re wanting to give to more than one family, hopefully more than five depending on how many toys we get. There’s a lot of families who may not have Christmas and can’t afford gifts or a meal for that day, so we want to help provide that for them because we all have to help each other out.”

“We want to be able to feed as many families as we can, it depends on how much in donations we get,” Advance America employee Daisha Carrasco added. 

People in the community can also visit the store’s location or call the store at (620) 626-7115 to nominate a family to be in the drawing.

“If you know a family who would benefit from this, we want to make that open so it can be fore anyone,” Alcala said. “If someone wants to make a nomination, they can come here to the store, we’re going to make up tickets and have a drawing from all the names and numbers in there, or they can also call the store. Once we pick out the family – we’re going to draw one out – we can go out Dec. 23 and give them the food so they have it for the holidays.”

Both Carrasco and Alcala offered encouragement for people in the community to make food and toy donations. 

“It’s one step, and one step can help 1,000 people,” Carrasco said. “One person can’t help everyone, it takes the community to help the community. And if you can’t help money-wise, sometimes it’s the smallest thing that could be major for someone else.”

“We’re hoping it will help open people’s eyes,” Alcala added. “Regardless if we’re blood or not, we’re all going to be there to help each other so no one’s alone on the holidays.”

Alcala added the store would like to do similar drives beyond just the holiday seasons, saying these drives are important year-round. 

“It’s not just because of the holidays. The year is ending and I know expenses come up at the end of the year somewhat suddenly,” Alcala said. “Everything gets a bit more expensive like with travel and food and that type of thing. I actually think it’s a bit sad we do things like this only around the holidays because it should be done all year round because people need help all year long. Both boxes will be here in the office for people to bring their donations into. We’re actually looking to incorporate this more throughout the year, we want to be able to have something like this like every few months or so. We want to keep this going and want to make it help the people in the community.”

“We’re always going to be here regardless of if it’s the holidays or the middle of the summer,” Carrasco added. “We’re always going to be here and we can help.”

 

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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