MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Salvation Army kicked off the holiday season with its “Rock the Red Kettle” Campaign on Saturday as hundreds of bell ringers set up at Cub Food Stores throughout the Twin Cities.
The Salvation Army is looking to raise more than $10 million this season, and in order to reach that goal, Commander Jeff Strickler said they will need a lot more volunteers.
“We have 120,000 hours to fill with volunteer bell ringers, so we can use all the help we can get from people,” Strickler said.
Whether it’s a couple of hours or a few dollars donated, Strickler said it all adds up.
“We raise about $30 an hour in kettles, and that $30 will usually buy food for a person for a week,” he said. “It will pay for housing for a person for a night. It will buy two coats for children for the winter. So that money goes a long ways in making a big difference.”
The Salvation Army also has a bell ringer app for iPhone users — Bell Ringer TC — just head to the app store. It can help you find a kettle location near you and assist you to sign up if you’d like to volunteer. Or sign up online at SalvationArmyNorth.org or call 651-746-3519.
Brett Herbert, 11, and his teammates took a day off from hockey practice to lend a hand during Saturday’s kickoff.
“You feel good for helping someone else that needs something, and it just feels good,” he said.
This is the second year coach Paul Hohag has signed them up to volunteer.
“I think the reality is we’re teaching more than just hockey,” Hohag said. “We’re teaching them about life lessons, and for them to be able to take a day away from the ice and give back to the community, and kind of learn some things about the less fortunate and that not everybody has it as well as they do.”
By Saturday night, the Twin Cities Salvation Army says they raised more than $148,000 – shattering the record set last year of $113,000.