For the first time in 130 years, The Salvation Army is starting its annual holiday fundraising campaign early across the country in order to rescue Christmas. The funds raised through our iconic red kettles are at risk this year due to COVID-19 while requests for services are at an all-time high.
Based on the increase in services already provided in response to the pandemic, we could serve up to 155 percent more people in 2020 with Christmas assistance, including putting food on the table, paying bills, providing shelter and helping place gifts under the tree – assuming the resources are available. Across the Indiana Division, we served 68,000 people last Christmas. If we see the same level of increased requests for service, that would mean 105,000 people who need our help this holiday season.
At the same time, due to the closing of retail stores, consumers carrying less cash and coins, and the decline in foot traffic, The Salvation Army could see up to a 50 percent decrease in funds raised nationally through the red kettles, which would limit their capability to provide services for the most vulnerable. To put this in perspective, last year $126 million was raised nationally through about 30,000 red kettles. $2.7 million was raised in red kettles across Indiana.
Since March, The Salvation Army Indiana Division has provided more than 62,000 meals, 5,200 nights of safe shelter, and emotional and spiritual support to over 10,000 people in need.
Now more than ever, they’re making it safer and simpler to donate in order to support the most vulnerable in Indiana:
• The best way to ensure that these vital services continue is to enlist in Love’s Army with a sustaining monthly gift of $25 per month.
• To help ensure the safety of bell ringers, donors and partners, The Salvation Army has adopted nationally mandated safety protocols.
• Donate digitally with Apple Pay or Google Pay at any red kettle in Indiana.
• Ask Amazon Alexa to donate by saying, “Alexa, donate to The Salvation Army,” then specifying the amount.
• Give any amount by texting “HOOSIER” to 24365.
• Talk to your local Salvation Army about how you can create a Virtual Red Kettle and raise money online to support local programs.
• Donate physical gifts in bulk.
• Adopt additional Angels to give hope and joy to kids and families in need through The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program.
Every donation provides help and hope to those in need, and all gifts stay within the community in which they are given. Visit SalvationArmyIndiana.org/Rescue-Christmas to donate or learn more about how you can help The Salvation Army rescue Christmas this year.