Salvation Army hopes to finish strong

staff reports

The 2015 Salvation Army Altus Red Kettle Campaign is almost over. Kettles will continue until the afternoon of Christmas Eve. Unfortunately, with bad weather over the Thanksgiving holiday and less foot traffic to stores, kettle donations should be up a little more than what they currently are. This is a concern with only five days left for ringing the bells!

Just in case you didn’t know, The Salvation Army relies on money raised in the Red Kettles – in coins, dollars and credit card gifts – to serve nearly 30 million people annually in more than 5,000 communities nationwide.

* From its humble beginnings as a local San Francisco fundraiser featuring a single crab pot in 1891, the Red Kettle Campaign has grown into one of the most recognizable and important charitable campaigns in the United States.

* Each year, more than 25,000 Salvation Army volunteers spread throughout the country from Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve to ring bells and solicit spare change and other donations from holiday shoppers.

* The Red Kettle Campaign helps the Army serve more than 4 million people in need during the Christmas season – including more than 1 million children – and serves nearly 30 million individuals throughout the year.

* All money raised in the Red Kettles stays in the communities where it was collected.

The Salvation Army helps in a variety of ways – some examples are below:

* Last year, The Salvation Army served nearly 58 million meals – that’s like making lunch for nearly every resident of Texas and California.

* The Salvation Army provides job referrals to nearly 90,000 Americans each year.

* Between 40 percent and 50 percent of all public support for The Salvation Army comes during the holiday season, making this a critical time for fundraising.

* All money donated to the Red Kettles goes to support programs and services in the area in which it was raised.

* We strongly encourage all Americans to give at a Red Kettle, volunteer as a bell-ringer, or even volunteer at a soup kitchen or shelter in your community. The most important thing is to give back.

The Salvation Army uses the donations to the Red Kettles for services to the Altus area, capped off by its Christmas assistance program. The Salvation Army of Altus includes Jackson and Greer Counties.

“Our goal this year is to raise $30,000 total for the area,” said Major Ben Walters, Jr. We are so very grateful to the donors who have helped us raise funds for our community. We hope for a big final push to help us make a real difference to those in need.”

“It is important the community knows our programs are ongoing all year long,” said Major Ben Walters, Jr.

staff reports

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