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500 Angel Tree kids still in need of holiday gifts in Arkansas

Most of us are shopping for holiday gifts for our loved ones. But some Arkansas families don't know how they'll be able to make the season bright.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Now that we're past Thanksgiving, most of us are in holiday mode: planning and shopping for gifts for our loved ones.

But some Arkansas families don't know how they'll be able to make the season bright.

"If you can imagine being a parent struggling to make ends meet, struggling to put food on the table . . . and then you get to the holidays and on top of that everyday struggle, you have to figure out how to provide Christmas and gifts as well," Major Bill Mockabee with the Salvation Army of Central Arkansas said.

The Salvation Army Angel Tree Program has been around for more than 40 years. Folks adopt an angel from trees stationed at local malls and stores, and buy toys and clothes specifically for that child.

"It's just very rewarding to know you're helping some children out and making their Christmas special," volunteer Beverly Morris said.

Volunteers like Morris help the Angel Tree Program run smoothly by collecting and sorting through donations, and making sure they're age appropriate for each child.

This year, the program needs a little extra holiday magic. Of the 3,000 Angel Tree kids in central Arkansas, 500 of them still need to be adopted.

"One of the things you're doing is removing a lot of anxiety from parents and bringing smiles and joy to so many kids on Christmas morning," Major Mockabee said. "Even just one child makes a huge difference for that entire family."

You can adopt an angel anywhere you find a Salvation Army Angel Tree. There are currently trees at Park Plaza Mall, McCain Mall, The Outlets of Little Rock, and several local Walmart stores.

You can also adopt online.

Toys and clothes purchased for the Angel Tree Program must be returned to the Salvation Army by December 6.