(CBS DETROIT)– Before Salvation Army volunteers hit the streets and ring bells for the Red Kettle Christmas campaign, there’s some much needed preparation.

“Today they’re painting those kettle stands, painting those kettles, putting new covers on the signs, and so we’re getting ready to kick off our Red Kettle bell ringing season,” said  Salvation Army divisional commander of the Eastern Michigan Division, Lieutenant Colonel John Turner.

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Turner says they couldn’t do it without the dedicated volunteers. Pam Callan is going on her 5th season volunteering and says, she looks forward to this every year.

“I count the days down to when they actually open the registration and I can look at my schedule and get my days in,” said Salvation Army Red Kettle volunteer Pam Callan.

The theme for this years Red Kettle campaign is “Hope Marches On” organizers want to spread hope to families struggling to make ends meet. Their fundraising goal for the season $8.3 Million.

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“Helping people stay in their houses is helping provide food for them, helping to meet their needs, whatever those needs might be,” Turner said.

Turner says, although the funds are raised during the Christmas season the need does not go away after the holidays, and the money raised is used to help thousands across the metro area year-round, especially during our current crisis.

“Through this pandemic even in the aftermath of the pandemic we want to come along aside of them and provide hope for them,” said Turner.

To help raise awareness and encourage the community to donate, the nonprofit welcomes Herman Moore and David Lewis as the public faces for The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit’s Red Kettle Christmas Campaign. Moore, founder & CEO of Team 84 and president of Tackle Life Foundation, served as chair for the 2020 Red Kettle Christmas Campaign. Lewis, president of AT&T Michigan, served in 2019. This year, Moore and Lewis have generously offered to return as co-chairs of the Christmas Campaign.

Metro Detroiters can also commit to providing hope through a donation. A sustaining gift of $25 a month will help hardworking families fend off homelessness. Hope marches on by:
•Texting GIFT to 24365
•Donating money via an online kettle, Paypal, Venmo or physical red kettle
•Donating cryptocurrency
•Volunteering as a virtual or in-person bell ringer at registertoring.com
•Visiting salmich.org
•Calling 877-SAL-MICH
Individuals and families can sign up as volunteer bell ringers by visiting registertoring.com where they have an option to choose a traditional, two-hour session at a physical red kettle site or participate in a virtual bell ringing shift where they can raise funds in the comfort of their own home. Virtual bell ringers can sign up and begin raising funds at any time, whereas traditional bell ringing begins on Friday, Nov. 12 and runs through Friday, Dec. 24, excluding Thanksgiving and Sundays.

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