CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- It's deadline day for Salvation Army's Angel Tree program after months of angels being sponsored in the community. As local companies continue to drop off big donations, officials say they had more families this year than last.
"Some bikes, MP3 players, some speakers, a scooter."
Each of those items means a Christmas gift for a child who would otherwise go without. Fifty children to be exact, which is why Conway Freight is one of many local companies wanting to take part.
"The employees got together and they thought about different ways to help the community, and they really wanted to help underprivileged children, with it being Christmastime and everything," said Joe Lomuscio with Conway Freight.
Companies like Conway, Salvation Army officials say, allowed them to register an estimated 12,000 children this year, and many years thousands of angels are left unsponsored. So the Salvation Army dips into donations to gift those children.
"We had all but 250 angels out in the community, and that's just because so many groups have stepped up to us and said we want to host an angel tree," said Lindsay Duncan with Salvation Army.
Hard to believe the room full of bags and each one represents a family in need, so each of these bags will be checked by number to make sure every child gets a gift. And it's deadline day for the angels to come back. This year the Salvation Army eliminated the 12 to 14 age group, and yet they say they still saw in increase in numbers.
"So what's interesting is we cut out a whole age group and we serve to 12 now, but our family count is higher, so we've actually registered more families," said Duncan.
And once it's all sorted, those families will come here to pick up their children's Christmas.
"We were amazed when we walked in here to see all these bikes and all these toys. It's just great to be a part of this," said Lomuscio.
Salvation Army will still be open this weekend for those who couldn't make it in Friday to drop off the gifts.
They'll start handing them out next Wednesday.