Salvation Army Kicks Off Annual Kettle Drive

From its humble beginnings in San Francisco in 1891, the Red Kettle Campaign has grown into one of the most recognizable and important charitable campaigns in the United States. Money raised locally in the U.S. Virgin Islands provides toys for kids, food for the hungry, and countless social service programs year-round in our island community.

“When you answer the ringing bell, you’re directly helping to feed an adult or child in need,” said Tom Bolt, Chairman of the Advisory Board for The Salvation Army St. Thomas Corps.

“The donations we receive during the holiday season are used all year long in our efforts to improve the lives of families, children, and individuals,” noted Valerie Hazeldine, Virgin Islands Regional Coordinator for The Salvation Army. “This year, we need the island’s support more than ever so that we can reach as many people in need as possible.”

Malone 6

The local campaign for the U.S. Virgin Islands launched on November 18 with this year’s Honorary Chairman, Shawn-Michael Malone, President of the 30th Legislature of the Virgin Islands, on the steps of the Capitol Building. President Malone made this year’s first kettle donation and encouraged all citizens of St. Thomas to get in the spirit of giving. The iconic red kettles can be found at PriceSmart, Cost U Less, Kmart (Lockhart Gardens), Plaza Extra, U.S. Post Office (Emancipation Gardens), Food Center, and Crown Bay Center on St. Thomas. Kettles can be found in St. Croix at all Kmart, Pueblo, Plaza Extra, and Cost U Less locations.

Malone kettle

Individuals and groups are also being encouraged to offer their time, even if it is just one hour, to help staff the kettle locations. Volunteers are needed Monday through Saturday until December 24. Interested participants can coordinate locations and times with Captain Anna Hawkins at [email protected].

This year, in addition to visiting one of the listed locations, anyone is invited to help ring a virtual bell by donating to an Online Red Kettle at www.onlineredkettle.org. Funds raised both at the storefront kettles and online kettle will stay in the U.S. Virgin Islands to help those in need in our community.

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