SALEM — The Salvation Army’s iconic Red Kettle campaign officially has begun to ring in the start of the Christmas season.
In its 131st year, the red kettles are a fixture outside many retailers, with bellringers focused on raising funds to help folks in their local communities.
The Salvation Army in Salem has a goal to raise $60, 000 that will help support the food pantry, rent and utility assistance, after-school learning, and hot meal programs.
“With needs continuing to increase and skyrocketing inflation, this year’s kettle campaign will be critical to help support year-round programming efforts. Our Corps Community Center wants to ensure we can Love Beyond Christmas for all our neighbors in need in Salem. Our goal is to stay focused on supporting families and neighbors in need not only at Christmas but all year long,” said Captain Gene Spence of the Salem location at 1249 N. Ellsworth Ave.
Giving at the red kettles has never been easier. The Salvation Army will continue offering nationwide Apple Pay/Google Pay at the kettle stands. Donors can also give via PayPal and Venmo at the kettles simply by a “bump” or a scan of a QR code to make an online donation with their smartphones. “Contactless giving options at the kettles are a blessing. Since the pandemic, people are carrying less cash and coins. Adding Venmo and PayPal to Apple Pay and Google Pay will help us engage more individuals this holiday season,” Captain Spence said.
Volunteers are a critical piece to The Salvation Army’s red kettle campaign.
For every two hours a volunteer stands at a red kettle, The Salvation Army can provide 104 meals to local neighbors in need.
“The Salvation Army is always in need of volunteers to come out to your favorite retail location to ring the bell for a few hours. There is a quick and easy way to sign up to volunteer at SAVolunteer.org for a date, time, and location that works in your schedule,” explained Captain Spence.
The Salvation Army Red Kettles have been active since 1891 to assist those in need. The Kettle campaign has been happening for 131 years and is one of the longest-running and most recognizable campaigns.
To volunteer to stand at a kettle, visit SAVolunteer.org.
To make a donation to The Salvation Army in Salem to help families this holiday season, or for more information, call 330-332-5624 or visit www.SalvationArmyOhio.org.
The Salvation Army is an evangelical part of the universal Christian church. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, and outreach programs for youth.
For more information, go to www.SalvationArmyOhio.org.