The Salvation Army in Greater Cincinnati Receives donation from Western & Southern Financial Group | Community Spirit
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The Salvation Army announced on Wednesday that it received a check for more than $22,500 from Western & Southern Financial Group. The total amount includes $11,266.70 from donations received this season at the Crib of the Nativity display at Eden Park’s Krohn Conservatory and an equal match from Western & Southern.
The 2012 donations increased by more than 50 percent compared to 2011. Since 1939, Western & Southern has sponsored the nativity display and for many years has matched the gifts donated by those visiting the display. Since 1994, donations from visitors to the Christmas display and Western & Southern’s match have resulted in approximately $200,000 donated to The Salvation Army.
“We’re delighted that we’ve been able to serve the local community through the Crib of the Nativity,” said John F. Barrett, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Western & Southern. “It’s a service to the community both in the presence of the nativity scene each Christmas season, and also through the donations that provide assistance to local families and children through The Salvation Army’s programs. Western & Southern Financial Group has long partnered with The Salvation Army to help those in our local community most in need, and this is a very tangible way that we’re standing with them in service to our neighbors in need.”
The Crib of the Nativity was first initiated by Western & Southern in 1939, and was presented at Lytle Park. It quickly became a popular attraction at Christmas, as those of all ages enjoyed the realistic nativity scene with live animals. Since 1954, the nativity has been presented in partnership with the Biedenharn family of Crittenden, KY. The family of plant nurserymen and women has been dedicated to the nativity display for generations, building it, storing it, managing it and providing the live animals.
During WWII the display temporarily moved to Union Terminal and served an important role both sending off and welcoming home troops serving our country. After the war, the display returned to Lytle Park, then moved to Eden Park in the late 1960s when construction on I-71 necessitated a new site. Over the years, thousands of individuals have visited the display each Christmas season, and it has become a multi-generational tradition for many families who appreciate its simple message to “Keep Christ in Christmas.”
“We’re very grateful to all those who donate at the nativity display and Western & Southern’s matching gifts year-after-year,” stated Major Hugh Steele, Divisional Commander at The Salvation Army. “Western & Southern Financial Group has been at our side for many years, making possible our programs that support those of all ages, from the children in our after-school programs to the seniors at our housing facility, and all those in between who come to us daily for various forms of assistance. We can only fulfill our mission when those in the community stand alongside us with their donations of time, talent and treasure. Time and again, they have been a role model for corporate partnerships in the life-changing work of agencies like The Salvation Army.”