The Salvation Army began distributing fans to local residents Monday, part of an annual fan drive conducted in partnership with WestLake Ace Hardware in Roswell.
WestLake customers donated $1,800 between June 7 and June 24 that was used to purchase 130 box fans for area residents, Salvation Army Lt. Joe West said.
He added that during the two-week drive, customers when they came to the register at the local WestLake store were asked if they wanted to make a contribution to the fan drive. WestLake then used the money to order box fans at cost and have them delivered to the Salvation Army Roswell Corps Community Center at no cost.
WestLake marked the start of the drive by donating 25 fans, bringing the number of box fans given away to 155.
“So they kind of kicked it off with 25,” West said.
“The community really stepped up this year and made a good amount of donations where we can get that many fans,” Tom Davidson, general manager of WestLake Ace Hardware in Roswell, said.
West said Salvation Army chapters and WestLake Ace Hardware stores throughout the country have been taking part in the drive for three years.
The drive is a way help people keep air circulating throughout the air homes in the summer months, and is especially important to elderly people who are unable to leave their homes a lot, or people who do not have the money to fix broken air conditioners or swamp coolers.
“So if there are any people who know someone who is elderly that is not able to get out of the house, we want to know who they are,” West said.
People who want a free fan can get one by going to the Salvation Army Roswell Corps Community Center at 612 West College Street during their normal operating hours Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. West said the only requirement is that a person who comes to get a fan have a valid form of ID, such as a driver’s license, and proof of residence.
“So if you say that your home is too hot, we believe you and want to help you,” West said.
Plenty of fans are still available. As of about 3:30 p.m. Monday Salvation Army Family Service Coordinator Yvett Melendez said only about 8 fans were given away.
Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.