Prices up; Red Kettle donations down

Published 8:08 pm Tuesday, December 6, 2022

The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign is one of the world’s longest-running and most recognizable fundraising efforts.

It all began in 1891 when Captain Joseph McFee resolved to provide a free Christmas dinner for the destitute populations in San Francisco. He had one major hurdle to overcome — funding the project.

Donna Kidd, Pike County Salvation Army Service Center director, said the captain remembered his sailor days in England, and how, where the boats docked, there was an iron kettle into which passers-by tossed coins to help the poor. He placed a similar pot at the Oakland Ferry Landing and soon had the money to see that the people were properly fed at Christmas.

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“Captain McFee’s kettle idea is the origin of the Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign, the annual campaign helps keep us afloat,” Kidd said. “The Pike County Salvation Army Service is self-sustaining and the Red Kettle Campaign is our largest fundraiser year after year.”

Right now, the Pike County Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign is down from where it was last year.

“The people of Pike County have giving spirits but prices are up and people just can’t afford to give,” Kidd said. “Giving is a sacrifice. Fundraising and donations support everything we do at the Salvation Army Service Center to help people here at home.”

Not only are kettle donations down, so is the number of bell ringers.

“There are store doors where we could ring but we need bell ringers,” Kidd said. “We have dedicated bell ringers that are ringing even more. We appreciate them—all our bell ringers– more than we can say.”

Kidd said two teams from WTBF will compete as bell ringers between the hours of 4 and 6 p.m. Friday at both doors at Walmart.

And, we invite others-businesses, individuals, families, churches, clubs and organizations, that have time to donate to a good cause to call the service center at 808-1069 or stop by the center at 509 South Brundidge, Street in Troy and volunteer to be a bell ringer.”