Maui News

Salvation Army Sets Out to “Rescue Christmas,” Launches Iconic Holiday Campaign Early

September 15, 2020, 5:07 PM HST
* Updated September 26, 7:22 PM
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PC: The Salvation Army – Hawaiian & Pacific Islands Website.

The Salvation Army announced on Monday a historic decision to start its annual holiday fundraising campaign early, the first time in 130 years – the organization made the decision after a significant increase in requests for services during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Salvation Army plans to “Rescue Christmas” by fundraising earlier in order to continue providing Christmas assistance to those in need.

The funds raised through the organization’s iconic Red Kettles are a major source of annual support for direct services at the holidays and throughout the year.

Based on the increase in services already provided in response to the pandemic, the organization could serve up to 155% 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. Last year in Hawaii, The Salvation Army served over 88,000 individuals.

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 in Red Kettles nationally, including approximately $700,000 in Hawaii.

“Today we are launching virtual Red Kettles to help ensure we are able to meet the ever-growing needs of our island communities,” said Major Jeff Martin, Divisional Leader of The Salvation Army Hawaiian & Pacific Islands. “We humbly ask donors to step up now as we navigate the pandemic and serve communities during the upcoming holiday and Christmas season.”

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Since March, The Salvation Army Hawaiian & Pacific Islands Division has provided over 200,000 meals, snacks and drinks, over 49,000 food boxes, and over 14,000 basic needs items to those in need in Hawaii. As part of today’s announcement, The Salvation Army is making it safer and simpler to donate to support the most vulnerable in Hawaiʻi:

  • Virtual Red Kettles have been launched for each island community. Visit HawaiiRedKettle.org and then scroll down to select the island community to support.
    • The Salvation Army also will be announcing potential locations for the iconic Red Kettles and bell ringers in the near future.
    • To help ensure the safety of bell ringers, donors and partners, The Salvation Army has adopted nationally mandated safety protocols.
    • Supporters will be able to donate digitally with Apple Pay or Google Pay at any Red Kettle in Hawaii.
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Visit Hawaii.SalvationArmy.org to donate or learn more about how you can help The Salvation Army rescue Christmas this year. If you need services or know of someone in need, visit Hawaii.SalvationArmy.org to find a location.

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