Rio Tinto joins the 2021 Salvation Army Christmas Appeal with gift donations

Taylar AmoniniBusselton Dunsborough Times
Meredith Dixon, Nicole Liedermoy, Justin Francesconi,and Captain Mark Schatz with the Salvation Army's 2021 Christmas Appeal  tree and presents.
Camera IconMeredith Dixon, Nicole Liedermoy, Justin Francesconi,and Captain Mark Schatz with the Salvation Army's 2021 Christmas Appeal tree and presents. Credit: Ro Tinto

The South West’s Salvation Army Christmas Appeal has been given a boost this year, with many hands coming together to help 800 families in need.

Rio Tinto has added $5000 worth of gifts for children and adults to this year’s appeal, as well as seemingly endless rolls of wrapping paper, all to help Santa and his mighty team of volunteers brighten up Christmas.

Over the next few weeks, Salvation Army regional captain Mark Schatz and his team of volunteers will distribute hampers of gifts and food to around 300 Busselton families and 500 Bunbury families.

Mr Schatz said he expected to see a high demand for donated gifts this year after a challenging 2020 continued into 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The objective is to help ensure people have a fun and dignified Christmas, regardless of their financial position,” he said.

“These quality gifts from Rio Tinto will certainly help put a smile on the face of many people on Christmas morning.”

Rio Tinto manager of community relations Justin Francesconi said the donation made “perfect sense” given the Salvation Army’s links with other charitable organisations which provided services at Christmas time.

“This donation aligns very well with Rio Tinto’s Community Giving objectives, which are all about giving back and supporting local,” he said.

“We’re very happy to fund these gifts but the real heroes are the volunteers who undertake charitable works, not just a Christmas time, but year-round.”

The Rio Tinto funding for gifts was secured through its Community Giving Program, and has allocated more than $50,000 to South West projects and programs over the last three months.

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