The Salvation Army is launching its annual Christmas kettle drive facing what it says is a level of need not seen since the Second World War — even as COVID-19 makes fundraising more difficult.
Amid unprecedented challenges, the Salvation Army is also in need of Christmas kettle volunteers in Penticton. The organization needs to fill over 500 volunteer shifts.
The Salvation Army stands and kettles that you see in various locations throughout Penticton beginning around this time of year raise most of the yearly budget for the food bank and family services operations.
Funds raised by kettle donations are used to support programs and services for marginalized people and to help them find a way out of poverty.
The Salvation Army also contributes 400-500 hampers every month to individuals and families in need, in addition to the 2000 people that use the food bank per month.
Last year the Kettle Campaign raised $102,662 for Family Services. This year the goal to reach is $100,000.
Like many things, kettles will look different this year. The Salvation Army is taking measures to ensure the safety of volunteers and donors.
Masks, equipment sanitation, hand hygiene, physical distancing and self-monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms will all be requirements for volunteers.
The kettles are in place this year at five Penticton locations and one in Keremeos. Last year there were 10 kettles total in Penticton and Keremeos but some locations had to be nixed due to COVID-19.
Kettlers are needed from Nov. 16 to Dec. 24, every day of the week except Sunday.
The shifts are two hours and training is provided. Volunteers can also pick their location and hours.
For more information contact organizer Rosemarie Cargill via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-492-6494.