The Springfield Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign starts today at several Springfield stores.
“Our kettles are a vehicle to bring aid and hope to those who need it most,” Ryan Ray, the development director of the Springfield Salvation Army said.
The Red Kettle Campaign has been a part of Springfield for 135 years, Ray said. The money raised from the campaign will go towards several of the Salvation Army’s programs including utility, rent, mortgage and food assistance.
Individuals known as bell ringers will stand from 10 a.m. to 7p.m. through Dec. 24 at the Springfield Walmart, Kroger and Rural King locations ringing bells to encourage individuals to donate to the red kettles.
Bell ringers will wear masks, stay six feet from the kettles and clean and sanitize the kettles, Ray said. He added that individuals will be able to donate to the kettle by using touchless pay - scanning a QR code on the sign.
The Springfield Salvation Army is already projecting that the Red Kettle Campaign will be about 50 percent of what it was last year because there are fewer stores for bell ringers can stand, less foot traffic near the kettles due to the coronavirus pandemic and less cash in people’s hands, Ray said. He said that means they are expecting a $50,000 dip.
Bell ringers are essential in raising funds for “those falling through the cracks, Ray said.
Springfield Salvation puts 82 cents of every dollar donated back into the community, Ray said.