Once again this Christmas season, you don’t have to go out in the cold to toss some cash into the Salvation Army’s Red Kettles.
Since its launch three years ago, the online kettle at www.onlineredkettle.org has helped provide nearly 145,000 meals to the hungry and nearly 6,000 Christmas toys to children.
The Web site allows individuals, organizations and businesses to host their own virtual fundraiser for The Salvation Army.
This year, each individual that signs up to host an Online Red Kettle at www.onlineredkettle.org will be entered to win an expense-paid trip to Dallas to see the Dallas Cowboys versus the Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints on Thanksgiving Day Nov. 25.
The contest is free to enter. All rules and information are viewable on the OnlineRedKettle.org website.
In addition to the Online Red Kettle component, a companion Facebook application, introduced in 2009, has made it not only easier to give, but more fun for participants.
The Facebook application allows your goal, progress and Online Red Kettle link to appear on your Facebook profile. Once someone makes a donation via Facebook, a notification will show in your newsfeed.
The Salvation Army has once again recruited local celebrities and community members to help raise awareness of the campaign through their own Online Red Kettles as well, including Detroit Red Wings Head Coach Mike Babcock, who is asking Red Wings fans to show their support via his personal kettle at www.onlineredkettle.org.
“Now more than ever, with poverty affecting an astonishing 14 percent of Michigan residents, it is important to remember those less fortunate,” said Major John Turner, general secretary for The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit. “Our Online Red Kettle program is an easy, user-friendly way to get your friends and family online together in support of The Salvation Army.”
The Online Red Kettle is easy to use. Go to www.onlineredkettle.org to register for your own virtual kettle. Hosts may set personal fundraising goals for their kettles and can even customize their own kettle Web pages. Hosts are encouraged to e-mail their friends, family members and co-workers to announce their fundraising efforts and collect donations through The Salvation Army’s secure Web site. Donors can designate donations to go to The Salvation Army in their ZIP code, in the ZIP code of the kettle host or in the ZIP code of their choice.
“It’s important for people to know that the Red Kettle giving season doesn’t end with Christmas — it continues through the end of January,” Major Turner said. “And the online technology allows you to continue supporting The Salvation Army 365 days a year.”
In addition to the Online Red Kettle, supporters may give directly at www.salmich.org or (877) SAL-MICH now. Supporters may also give at any of the more than 350 kettle locations stationed throughout southeast Michigan through Dec. 24.
Founded by William Booth in London, England in 1865, The Salvation Army is a faith-based, non-profit organization dedicated to serving people in need without discrimination. In 2009, The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit was involved in providing nearly 3.2 million meals and more than 700,000 nights of shelter for the homeless. The Salvation Army uses 85 cents of every dollar raised to provide direct services to people in need each and every day of the year.
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