Salvation Army Kettle Drive going mobilePublished 6:45pm Saturday, November 12, 2011
The Salvation Army Kettle Drive is going mobile.
Salvation Army Lt. David Amick is looking to expand their reach by adding a mobile kettle to be used at events like Christmas in the City andthe Austin Festival of Lights, a new light show planned at the Jellystone Park.
“We have a lot of different things we’re going to be trying this year,” Amick said.
The Salvation Army kick off its kettle drive Friday morning. The drive has been an Austin tradition for more than 75 years.
“It is kind of important that people are aware that we’re starting and that the season’s around the corner, and we really do need their help, whether it’s as a volunteer or whether it’s through their financial aid,” Amick said.
Along with the mobile unit, there will be nine kettles out around Austin: Walgreens, Jim’s Market Place, Sterling Main Street, Shopko, Austin Bruins home games and two at both Hy-Vee and Walmart.
The Salvation Army is targeting $112,000 for its overall holiday drive, and it’s aiming to take in about $42,000 of that from the kettles. The money goes toward operating costs, the food shelf, emergency shelter and various programs.
Last year, the drive raised $123,000, but fell short of its goal $136,000.
The Salvation Army received $200 checks from both the Shriner’s Oriental Band and the Austin Shriner Club at the kick off.
“We greatly appreciate all the work the Shriners do,” Amick said.
The Shriners will man all the kettles on Dec. 2, including kettles at Hormel Foods Corp. and Quality Pork Processor Inc.
Last year, the Shriners raised about $3,250, and they secured matching grant to bring to total to about $6,500. The club is looking to secure the grant again.
“It really helps the Salvation Army,” said Shriner Norm Hecimovich.
Though hundreds of volunteers have already signed up, Amick said they’re really short so far.
“We’re making a plea for as many volunteers as we can get,” he said.
People interested in volunteering can call Kim Hallman at 437-4566.
“We’re trying some new things, and we’re excited about getting started,” Amick said.
Amick hopes the mobile stand will improve the Salvation Army’s visibility at public events.