Ravens Wives Handpick Clothes, Gifts for Needy Families
Counterparts to the likes of Baltimore Ravens players Ray Lewis and Josh Wilson cruised the aisles at Sam's Club to shop for 10 recipients of The Salvation Army's Adopt-A-Family program.
The NFL's Off the Field Player's Wives Association joined forces with the Salvation Army and Sam's Club Thursday in Owings Mills, bringing several of the Baltimore Ravens' counterparts to the bulk-discount store to shop, wrap and ring a holiday bell in the name of giving.
The Salvation Army selected 10 families in 10 cities across the country to receive the $1000 shopping spree from Sam's Club. Several of the players' wives prowled the aisles, armed with information sheets with preferences and clothing sizes, said Diana Ellis, regional resource development director.
Ellis said each family's story — like the one where a child lost his bike along with nearly all of his possessions after his family was evicted —determines who's chosen and what they get.
"It's for whoever needs the most help," she said.
The point is to afford families the opportunity to save their income for the things necessary to restart life, Ellis said. On top of programs such as Adopt-A-Family, The Salvation Army provides free housing, meals and life skills programs for up to two years at the Booth House in Baltimore so that families can eventually pay for rent, furniture and food, she said.
An institution more than 130 years old, the Salvation Army approved the applications of more than 1,800 families for the Adopt-A-Family program this year, she said.
About 6,000 Angels, or needy children, were also approved for aid — but 600 of them still need donations, she said. The Salvation Army has an online "red kettle" set up on its Facebook page for people to give what they can, she said.
As for the ones without a bike? "Oh, they're getting one!" she said.