01/29/06 — Salvation Army kettle campaign comes up short

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Salvation Army kettle campaign comes up short

By Becky Barclay
Published in News on January 29, 2006 2:09 AM

The Salvation Army 's 2005 kettle campaign came up almost $30,000 short. The goal was $70,000, but a little under $41,000 was raised, Salvation Army commander Maj. Andrew Wiley said.

In 2004, the campaign raised a little more than $70,000.

Kettles were placed at several locations throughout the county Nov. 25 through Christmas Eve. Wiley said not having locations in Clinton in 2005, in part, hurt the kettle campaign. "We tried to recruit volunteers for those locations, but were not successful," he said.

There were also some locations in Goldsboro that were not available last year. Four grocery stores closed. Due to some corporate rulings, kettles could no longer be placed at other locations.

"We knew going into the season that there were a lot of factors that had caused it to be a difficult year for fundraising everywhere," Wiley said. "We knew it was going to be a stretch to try and make $70,000. We worked at it and did what we could do. We pushed for volunteers. We kept all of our major sites covered throughout the season.

"We feel good about it. When you go back and compare locations last year with the same locations the year before, we were actually slightly a little ahead."

Wiley said the kettle campaign did fairly well volunteerwise, but the Salvation Army is constantly trying to increase its volunteer base.

"We had one family from the base who came out and did two or three evenings for us," he said. "Here was a family with children teaching their children at that young an age to go do something to give back to the community.

"We had one lady who volunteered several nights who would always bring her cassette player and play Christmas music. Volunteers can have a good time doing something for the community."

Last year, the Salvation Army had to pay only six or seven people to ring the bells for the kettle campaign. Wiley said that was due partly to having so many volunteers and partly to having fewer locations.

The money was used to help the needy for Christmas.

"We made sure that every one of the 800 children who came through at Christmastime got a toy and a stocking filled with items," Wiley said. "We gave food boxes to a lot of families so they would have Christmas dinner and something left for maybe a couple of days after that. We did 40 food boxes for senior citizens at Kirkwood."

Although the money raised covered Christmas, it will not be quite enough to provide help during the winter months when the Salvation Army assists with heating bills and other needs.