Angel Tree Christmas Assistance

What is Angel Tree?

Angel Tree is a unique holiday assistance program that connects a generous individual or group with a deserving child (or “Angel”) in need. Sign up for assistance in late October, and your Angels’ gifts will be ready to pick up on distribution day in mid-December. Angel adoption takes place after Thanksgiving for several weeks at Castleton Square Mall, Greenwood Park Mall, and the Indiana History Center in downtown Indy.
Angel Tree logo (web)

Program History

Every Christmas there are children lacking vital needs because their families are struggling financially and cannot afford the expense. The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program has been running for 30 years to ensure that these children have a wonderful holiday season with their families.

The Salvation Army Indiana Division has been providing Christmas assistance to our community for generations. In keeping with our mission to meet human needs in His name without discrimination, we provide food assistance to nearly 800 families and Christmas gifts to more than 2,500 children every holiday season.

In an effort to expand our ministries to provide both vital needs and a joyful Christmas to underprivileged children, we were proud to introduce Angel Tree to Central Indiana in 2015. Many children in our community return to school after the holidays in worn out uniforms, insufficient winter clothing, or needing school supplies replenished. Angel Tree is a traditional Salvation Army program designed to enable community members to personally provide these vital items to specific children in need.

To see photos from the 2017 Angel Tree program, click on the links below:

A child helps his mother choose an Angel for their family to adopt.

A child helps his mother choose an Angel for their family to adopt.

How is Angel Tree different from other holiday programs?

Angel Tree is different from other holiday assistance programs because a sponsor is able to feel a special connection with his/her “adopted” child. The sponsor receives the child’s first name and a personalized needs and wish list for the child. Other holiday assistance programs give sponsors minimum information such as “5-year-old boy” without any gift suggestions or host generic toy drives. The wish list given to the sponsor is thoughtfully prepared by the child’s parents so the sponsor knows that he/she is buying something the child both needs and will be excited to open on Christmas morning.

How can I become an Angel Tree volunteer?
As you can imagine, it takes hundreds of volunteer hours to make Angel Tree happen. From helping shoppers adopt Angels at the mall to sorting bags and helping families on distribution day, volunteers are essential to a successful Angel Tree program. To learn more about how individuals, families, groups and businesses can help, visit our Volunteer Page or click the button below to sign up now. Angel Tree vol button

How can my company or organization adopt Angels?
Much of the support for Angel Tree comes from local businesses and organizations that adopt multiple angels as a way to give back to people in their community. Whether you want to adopt five Angels or 50, this support makes Angel Tree possible. If you are interested in adopting Angels this Christmas, check back in October and make your Angel tag requests before the rush. Click the button below to download an Angel adoption form today!

Angel Tree corp button

Where can I go to adopt an Angel?
Angel Trees will be on display in Castleton Square Mall, on the north side of Indianapolis, and Greenwood Park Mall, on the south side. The dates for our 2018 adoption period will be set soon, so come back here for updates as we get closer to October. Shoppers will be able to choose an Angel from a tree from during designated hours each day. They are given special Angel Tree bags to be filled with gifts for their Angel. Each Angel tag includes a child’s age, clothing and shoe sizes, “wants” (like toys or games) and “needs” (like jeans or boots). Once filled, the bags can be brought back to the Angel Trees, which will be set up just outside the Macy’s mall entrance at both locations. Any bags not returned to the mall by 7 PM on the last day of adoptions can still be dropped off at The Salvation Army’s Indiana Headquarters at 6060 Castleway West Drive on Indy’s northeast side until 4 PM the following day.

Back this year, a special Angel Tree will be on display in the lobby of the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center at 450 W. Ohio Street in downtown Indy. As part of the annual IHS Festival of Trees, the tree will both tell the history of The Salvation Army in Indiana and host hundreds of Angels for festival attendees to adopt. Filled Angel Tree bags can be brought back to the Indiana History Center or dropped off at Salvation Army headquarters.

Angel Tree Assistance Q&A

IMG_4630 (web)Is my family eligible for assistance?

Registration opens for Christmas in October 2018. Angel Tree is designed to help families whose income falls below the 2018 United States Poverty Guidelines. The qualified income level is dependent upon the number of persons in your household, so visit to determine whether your family qualifies. If you are already planning to apply for Christmas assistance from another agency or organization, please do not apply for Angel Tree, too. Our goal is to ensure that as many central Indiana children as possible are able to have a special Christmas.

Which of my children are eligible for Angel Tree?

Children ages 0-12 who are residents of Marion County, Indiana, are eligible for assistance through the Angel Tree program.

When and where can I apply for Angel Tree assistance?

Angel Tree applications take place in late October. There are two Indianapolis locations where applicants can sign up: The Salvation Army Fountain Square Corps Community Center at 1337 S. Shelby Street and The Salvation Army Eagle Creek Corps Community Center at 4400 N. High School Road. Specific details will be posted here in October.

What items must I bring with me in order to apply for Angel Tree assistance?

All applicants must bring the following with them on the day they apply. Applications cannot be processed without these items.

  • Valid form of photo ID for applicant (examples: U.S. Driver’s License, U.S. Passport, Indiana State ID, School ID, Green Card, etc.)
  • Proof of residence (examples: utility bill, bank statement, etc.); must be within the last month before registering.
  • Proof of ALL income, earned and unearned (includes: check stubs, unemployment, SSI, pensions, veteran benefits, disability, SNAP, child support, TANF/AFDC, WIC, etc.); documents MUST have a dollar amount on them, as we cannot accept a SNAP card or appointment letter; SNAP cannot be your only form of income.
  • Proof of rent, mortgage, or subsidized housing (receipt, lease, or letter from landlord)
  • Proof of ALL other expenses (includes: car loan, medical bills, credit cards, other loans, etc.)
  • All current utility statements (includes: electric, water, gas, cable, phone, etc.)
  • Birth Certificates for all children to be registered.
  • List of all clothing and shoe sizes for children to be registered.

Christmas Photo_039 (web)I still have questions. Who can I can I contact?

Contact Sandy Gould at [email protected] with any questions you have about Angel Tree.