Thielen Foundation and partners help provide merry Christmas for Salvation Army families

Dec 18, 2023

Adam Thielen may not be a Minnesota Viking anymore, but that didn’t stop the two-time Pro Bowl wide receiver from giving back to local families during the 2023 Christmas season.

For the sixth consecutive year, Thielen provided Christmas gifts for Twin Cities families served by The Salvation Army, on behalf of the Thielen Foundation and its partners. 

This year’s event took place Dec. 15 at The Salvation Army in South Minneapolis (pictured), where five families received an abundance of Christmas presents, along with guest passes to Valleyfair amusement park in Shakopee. Another 100 families received grocery gift cards for holiday meals, courtesy of Cub

The five families are enrolled in a Salvation Army mentoring program called Pathway of Hope, which helps families escape generational poverty.   

One of the families included Ja’Nae and her four kids. They received enough presents to fill the trunk of Ja’Nae’s car. 

“We got so many gifts – I didn’t expect this,” said Ja’Nae (pictured), who cried tears of joy when she received the presents. “Thank you so, so much to the Thielens, and God bless you. You don’t know how much this means.”

The combined donation between Cub, Valleyfair and the Thielen Foundation was valued at more than $22,000.   

Although Thielen couldn’t be at the event because he now plays football for the Carolina Panthers, he and his wife, Caitlin, recorded a video for the families they blessed. 

“We're excited to support The Salvation Army again and all the families back in Minnesota," Adam said in the video. "We hope you guys have a great Christmas – a blessed Christmas – and we're so thankful for you." 

This holiday season, The Salvation Army is calling on all of our supporters to Love Beyond. #LoveBeyond is a national Salvation Army campaign that encourages people to put love above all else, in order to show families in need that love exists beyond their most difficult situations – be it hunger, overdue bills, eviction, addiction, and other hardships. Join us by giving a donationsigning up to volunteer, or ringing bells at a Red Kettle.

* Event photos courtesy of Jody Russell Photography and the Thielen Foundation. 

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