The Salvation Army of Wake County sets out to "Rescue Christmas" due to immense impact of COVID-19

For the first time in 130 years, The Salvation Army of Wake County is starting its annual holiday fundraising campaign early in order to rescue Christmas. The funds raised through the red kettles are at risk this year due to COVID-19 while requests for services are at an all-time high.

Based on the increase in services already provided in response to the pandemic, TSA Wake County could serve up to 155 percent more people in 2020 with Christmas assistance, including putting food on the table, providing shelter and helping place gifts under the tree – assuming the resources are available. TSA Wake County served 124,169 people last year. If TSA Wake County sees the same level of increased requests for service, that would mean many more people who need The Salvation Army’s help this holiday season.

At the same time, due to the closing of retail stores, consumers carrying less cash and coins, and the decline in foot traffic, The Salvation Army could see up to a 50 percent decrease in funds raised through the red kettles, which would limit the capability to provide services for the most vulnerable. To put this in perspective, last year $332,113.66 was raised through about 60 red kettles throughout Wake County.

“These are difficult days and times and it’s difficult even now to ask this community once again to help The Salvation Army help others,” said Al Newsome, area commander of The Salvation Army of Wake and Lee Counties. “Historically, this community has always been generous in helping those in need and even during the pandemic, this community has responded with open arms. This Christmas season will be no different except that there are more who are in need this season.

“I am hopeful this community will respond as it did during the pandemic by helping The Salvation Army to never close it doors, that when they see the need, they will respond as they always have and by God’s grace and mercy, we will be emboldened to meet the challenge and rescue Christmas.”

Since March, The Salvation Army of Wake County has seen an increase in service provided in its daily soup line and is beginning to see more of a need for the provision of food through its Food Pantry Program. Now more than ever, TSA Wake County is making it safer and simpler to donate in order to support the most vulnerable in Wake County:

  • The best way to ensure that these vital services continue is to enlist in Love’s Army with a sustaining monthly gift of $25 per month.
  • TSA Wake County will begin ringing bells at Hobby Lobby on November 9 and will announce other locations as soon as possible. To help ensure the safety of bell ringers, donors and partners, The Salvation Army has adopted nationally mandated safety protocols.
  • Donate digitally with Apple Pay or Google Pay at any red kettle.
  • Ask Amazon Alexa to donate by saying, “Alexa, donate to The Salvation Army,” then specifying the amount.
  • Give any amount by texting “KETTLES” to 91999.
  • Donate physical gifts in bulk.
  • Adopt additional Angels to give hope and joy to kids and families in need through The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program.

Every donation provides help and hope to those in need, and all gifts stay within the community in which they are given. The public may visit to donate or learn more about how they can help The Salvation Army rescue Christmas this year. If services are needed or if there is someone in need, please visit

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