Kettle worker signs on – then signs up!

Emily Hanson wasn’t looking for salvation––she just wanted to help people.

New Torrance Corps soldier Emily Hanson found more than she was looking for when she applied to be a Coos Bay, Oregon Army kettle worker back in November 2001. Carefully reading the booklet “What You Should Know About The Salvation Army” and the War Cry which highlighted the Army’s relief effort following 9/11, Emily found herself excited to play a role in raising funds to help people in need.

As people filled the red kettle, Emily heard story after story of how The Salvation Army helped in times of need––the sharecropper’s daughter who was sent to summer camp, the WW II vet who was still thankful for doughnuts and coffee after so many years, the family who received household goods following a fire. Again and again Emily heard, “You people were so wonderful…” “You people were there for me…” Being identified with the Army’s work prompted her to learn more.

Emily soon got involved at the Coos Bay corps. Inspired by the scripture-based sermons she heard each week, she started reading her Bible and eventually became a Christian. Emily describes the change in her life: “A transformation began in me. I am a new woman…a child of God.”

Four years later, Hanson moved to Southern California and was recently enrolled as a senior soldier by Torrance Corps Officer Captain Ivan Wild. Bringing 24 family members and friends with her to witness the event, she says, “This year when I stand at my kettle, it will be in the uniform of a Salvation Army soldier. I am now officially one of ‘you people,’ dedicated to the Lord and to the motto, ‘Heart to God and Hand to Man.’”


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