Senator Markley and Representative Sampson Help Raise $86,000 for the Salvation Army

December 10, 2014

Legislators ring bells during Southington Community Services fundraiser

SOUTHINGTON — Hundreds in need will receive groceries, heating oil, and other necessities after Southington Community Services and Wal-Mart helped raise more than $43,000 for the food pantry on Tuesday.

“This is unbelievable,” said Mark Fazzolari, Southington Community Services assistant director. “No one expected this.”

For two hours in the afternoon, state Rep. Rob Sampson, state Sen. Joe Markley, Community Services Director Janet Mellon, Fazzolari, and others rang Salvation Army bells to raise money outside Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart agreed to match all the donations in the two hours, resulting in $86,000 raised.
This is the fourth year of the annual fundraising effort. In the first year, community services and Wal-Mart raised $24,000. About $50,000 was donated the second year and $44,000 the third year.

As people entered and exited the Queen Street store, many placed checks, cash, and coins into red baskets.

Barbara Roberts and her 15-year-old daughter Rachel Roberts of Southington made a cash donation.

“That’s the meaning of Christmas,” Rachel Roberts said.

“They do such a wonderful job,” Barbara Roberts said, referring to community services.

By 3:45 p.m. Fazzolari said individual checks totaling $10,000 and $4,000 had been donated.

Shortly after 4 p.m., Mellon was shocked when another large donation was made by a local family.

“That woman just donated $5,000,” she said to Fazzolari.

Every year it takes between $80,000 and $100,000 to supply food and other items through the food pantry, Fazzolari said. He said it’s important to keep the pantry stocked.

“This could be eight months of food,” Mellon said of the amount raised Tuesday.

Sampson and Markley did their best to promote the event beforehand.
“This is a privilege to be able to help,” Sampson said.

“It’s successful because people in Southington make it a success,” Markley added.