Salvation Army, Target help needy kids prepare for school

Generosity and cooperation teamed up to help needy kids buy new clothes, shoes and supplies in Glendale Tuesday morning.

The sales spree was a result of a partnership between Target and the Salvation Army in which the national retailer provides $1 million in gift cards to 12,000 children. Volunteers took the children shopping to help them obtain what they needed.

Each participant was given an $80 gift card to spend in one hour at the Glendale Galleria. On Tuesday, 31 kids, aged 5 to 16, shopped with firefighters and members of Kiwanis, Rotary and L'Oreal clubs.

“It was wonderful, seeing all the kids smile,” Glendale Salvation Army Capt. Rio Ray said.

Lt. Kari Rudd of the Burbank Salvation Army said parents are kept from the event so the children are free to “get what they want, what they like.”

Eight-year-old Andrea Campos shopped with Disney employee Andrea Gibson — a Burbank mother of two who helped the younger Andrea pick out a selection of clothes.

Disney employee Cindy Lopez helped 8-year-old Mason Tovar find the right pair of tan cargo shorts to go with bright orange and green T-shirts he picked out.

In the shoe department, Kathy Young and Kevin Deegan of Hope 4 Hollywood taught 9-year-old Wilner Palma how to tie his laces on a new pair of Star Wars shoes.

After checking out, Rudd of the Salvation Army told Young, “The fact that he's smiling — he never smiled until literally about a month and a half ago. He needed some love.”

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