“Our ability to raise vital funds to serve those in need this Christmas and beyond is at risk.”

By Meghan Overdeep
September 16, 2020
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Credit: George Rose/Getty Images

For the first time in 130 years, The Salvation Army is starting its annual holiday fundraising campaign early.

While need for services is at an all-time high, COVID-19 is threatening the funds raised by the organization’s iconic red kettles—jeopardizing Christmas for countless Americans.

Based on the increase in services already provided in response to the pandemic, the organization predicts that it could grant Christmas assistance to 155% more people in 2020. This includes putting food on the table, paying bills, providing shelter, and placing gifts under the tree.

Last year, $126 million was raised through about 30,000 red kettles. But this holiday season, with the closing of retail stores, and a decline in foot traffic amid the coronavirus pandemic, The Salvation Army could see as much as a 50% decrease in funds raised through the red kettles.

“Our ability to raise vital funds to serve those in need this Christmas and beyond is at risk,” Commissioner Kenneth G. Hodder, National Commander of The Salvation Army, said in a news release. “We need everyone who has the capacity to come alongside us and ensure that the holiday season is bright for millions. We’re asking you to help rescue Christmas with us by providing support in any way you can. Our hope is to offset these challenges to meet the increasing demand for services across our nation.”

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There are a number of ways you can help The Salvation Army continue their essential work in your community this holiday season. Donate digitally with Apple Pay or Google Pay at any red kettle across the country or text “KETTLE” to 91999.

Every donation provides help and hope to those in need, and all gifts stay within the community in which they are given.

To donate or learn more, Visit RescueChristmas.org.