SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Share the love – that’s what the Salvation Army of Savannah did Friday during its annual food and gift packages distribution.

“We are taking all the love of this community and putting it into people’s cars,” says Major Paul Egan of the Salvation Army of Savannah.

The pandemic made the holidays hard for many families.

“We’ve talked with a number of people who’ve lost their job or lost their source of income because of the pandemic, so the opportunity now to help them in what’s been a very difficult year is even all the better,” Major Egan said.

Community members and local organizations proved the holidays truly are the season of giving during the distribution event.

“We’ve got so many people that love and care for their neighbors here in this area and they do so by giving to the Salvation Army so that eventually us and our team are able to put that love in somebody’s car,” says Egan.

For Ruth Mathis, a volunteer with the Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary, serving others is a family tradition.

“My grandmother served the Salvation Army in Florida and was buried in her uniform, so this is continuing her legacy,” Mathis said.

Continuing this community tradition of giving, volunteers say, brings joy to everyone.

“To receive those hugs and to receive those thanks and a couple little tears to say they were having a really tough year and now their Christmas is going to be awesome,” Egan said.

The Salvation Army of Savannah is also holding a Christmas Dinner on Christmas day, at its Montgomery Street Location. For those living at the shelter there, it will be a sit-down meal. The dinner is open to the public too as carry-out.