Kettle donations still short
Although the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign raised approximately $494,000 between Nov. 19 and Dec. 24, they are still short of their $550,000 goal to keep programs funded.
The goal can still be reached due to last-minute donations, along with kettle donations from Christmas eve day. The final count should be in later this week.
Resource and Media Specialist Merrilu Bennett said they have seen an increase in the amount of donations every year from the Red Kettle campaign.
In 2004, a total of $277,000 was raised through the campaign; $550,000 was raised in 2009.
The money raised during the campaign helps fund the Salvation Army’s Christmas Cheer program, as well as 10 other programs that operate year round. Bennett said those programs range from helping people battle drug and alcohol addiction to helping them get back on their feet and find employment.
A total of seven gold coins were found during the New Kettle Campaign for the Salvation Army of Lee, Hendry and Glades counties.
The last gold coin, a 1976 South African Krugerrand was dropped in the kettle last Thursday afternoon at the Publix l at Colonial and Summerlin.
The coins have a value of $1,400 to $1,600.
Bennett said they will not know how many volunteers rang bells this year until January. She added that last year they had 546 volunteer bell ringers participate from anywhere from an hour to three hours a day, five days a week.
They are “all considered extremely valuable and we are so thankful for their support and time,” Bennett said.