Bell Ringer Shortage Impacting The Salvation Army’s Red Kettles

Dec 9, 2021

Cleveland, OH (December 8th, 2021) – The Salvation Army’s iconic Red Kettle campaign is two weeks into its annual campaign on raising funds for their local communities. This year, The Salvation Army in Greater Cleveland kettle campaign is themed “Hope Marches On,” which aims to raise $650,000 that will help support food pantries, basic needs, and hot meals at their five area corps community centers.

“Two weeks into our annual campaign, we are 34% down in comparison to last year. We are grateful for those who contribute and ask Clevelanders to rally their support around our red kettles. The funds raised during this time are critical to providing year-round support to our neighbors when they need it most.” stated Major Thomas Applin, Divisional Secretary of Greater Cleveland Area Services.

“A real challenge this year is getting bell ringers. Many folks are still worried about the COVID variants, and general staffing shortages are impacting the number of kettles we can staff.” continued Applin.

Volunteers are a vital piece to The Salvation Army’s red kettle campaign. Every 2 hours that a volunteer stands at a red kettle, The Salvation Army can provide 104 meals to local neighbors in need. “The Salvation Army is always in need of volunteers to come out to their favorite retail location to ring the bell for a few hours. There is a quick and easy way to sign up for volunteering. Visit to select a date, time, and location that works in your schedule,” explained Major Applin.

The Salvation Army Red Kettles have been in use since 1891 to assist those in need and is one of the longest-running and most recognizable campaigns.

The iconic red kettles are on site at local retailers, including Walmart, Giant Eagle, Discount Drug Mart and Dave’s Markets to name a few. Individuals can also donate from the comfort and safety of their homes by giving to a virtual red kettle at

Nationwide, the Salvation Army will continue offering Apple Pay/Google Pay at the kettle stands. New for 2021, donors will also be able to give via PayPal and Venmo at the kettles simply by a “bump” or a scan of the QR code. “Expanding the contactless giving options at the kettles is a blessing. With less cash being carried, adding Venmo and PayPal will help us engage more individuals this holiday season,” said Major Applin.

To volunteer to stand at a kettle, visit To assist The Salvation Army in Greater Cleveland in serving families this holiday season or for more information, call 216.861.8185.

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