PHILADELPHIA, PA — This December, The Salvation Army Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware Division is celebrating Salvation Army Red Kettle Month, as declared by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives., This holiday season, the faith-based nonprofit organization finds itself in dire need of volunteers to staff Red Kettles and ring bells to help raise money for individuals and families who need holiday assistance, food, shelter, utility assistance, case management, and more. Since the start of the pandemic, The Salvation Army Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware Division served over 900,000 people.
“The Salvation Army is calling on those who can to give not only their treasure, but also their time and talent to help raise the funds needed to serve our struggling neighbors,” said Lt. Colonel Larry Ashcraft, Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware. “Individuals and families are still feeling the effects of pandemic poverty. Our work is not done, and therefore, we are calling on the army behind The Salvation Army to help us reach every single person who needs help.”
The Salvation Army ranks #2 on The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s 2021 America’s Favorite Charities list. This year its holiday message, “Hope Marches On,” is meant to build awareness for individuals and families who continue to be impacted from pandemic poverty – whether they are homeless, on the verge of eviction, or are hungry. Over the course of the pandemic, The Salvation Army Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware Division served over 17 million meals to individuals across the region. Roughly 580,000 individuals have been served in the division’s shelter and housing programs over the same span.
As these needs continue to increase, there is an even greater need for volunteers. Last holiday season, 4,000 volunteers were able to help The Salvation Army Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware Division serve struggling community members, down from 11,800 the previous year. And at present, the volunteer numbers are even lower, but there is still time to help.
“Without the help from our community members, we will not reach that little child who is on the verge of not having a Christmas this year,” said Colonel Ashcraft. “Call your local Salvation Army or go to our website to see how you can help.”
There are many ways that individuals can volunteer with The Salvation Army this year. They can sign up on its website to stand at Red Kettles in areas throughout the Eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware region. They can also help with Angel Tree programs, which provide toys to children in need, or sign up to assist with other toy and donation drives.
If unable to physically volunteer, individuals can share the link to The Salvation Army Eastern & Pennsylvania Division’s Virtual Red Kettle and encourage others to give through the website. Donations are tracked by the donor’s zip code, which means his or her money will stay local to help their neighbors in need.
“There are so many ways to volunteer, and there are many ways to give,” said Lt. Colonel Ashcraft. “No matter how you choose to assist, you are helping to create a positive, lasting memory for a family who needs it most.”
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