The Downtown Raleigh Ambassadors collected over 600 canned goods, 115 winter jackets and clothing, and over $500 in cash and gift card donations at the 3rd Annual Ambassador Goodwill Christmas Drive for local downtown charities on December 17. Though the weather throughout the event was rainy, windy and in freezing conditions, the event was still a great success.
The event was organized by the Downtown Raleigh Ambassadors as a way to give back to the local community. The Ambassadors are known for providing daily cleaning and safety duties downtown, but they are also known for making a positive difference in the community.
The event was held for the second consecutive year at the AT&T Winterfest Ice Skating Rink (sponsored by The Polar Ice House), who generously donated the rink for the day for the Goodwill event. People donating canned goods, clothing or money were able to skate for free, and were treated to pizza and snacks throughout the event. Local musical groups RazzMaJazz Dixieland Band and Carpe Diem Saxophone Quartet provide holiday music.
Donations were collected for local downtown charities such as the Salvation Army, The Raleigh Rescue Mission, The Shepards Table Soup Kitchen, Healing Place and the Cornerstone Homeless Shelter. After the event, all donations were distributed in person to the local charities by the Ambassador teams.
Over the past three years the Ambassadors have hosted this event, the Ambassadors have collected over 3,000 canned goods, 800 hundred winter items (jackets/sweaters/gloves), 100 toys and over $2,500 in cash donations and gift cards.
A recipient of a donation recently wrote,
"Dear Mr. Rutten,
Thank you and all of the Downtown Raleigh Ambassadors, for the surprise cash donation to Cornerstone. The Downtown Ambassadors have always provided us with great service. We plan on using the money to help with our holiday party for people using our services. You were very kind and generous. Happy Holidays to everyone. Thank You!"
- Michael Y. - Cornerstone Homeless Assistance
The Ambassadors are looking forward to making next year's event even better!