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Pandemic forces Salvation Army to begin Christmas fundraising early

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 6:37 AM EDT
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PORTLAND, Maine (WMTW) - The Salvation Army said it is starting its Christmas fundraising early this year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The organization said it expects to serve 155% more people this Christmas, which includes food assistance, paying bills, providing shelter and providing Christmas gifts.

At the same time, the Salvation Army said it could see a 50% drop in money raised through its red kettle campaign due to retail store closures, less foot traffic and fewer people carrying cash.

The Salvation Army said it has adopted safety protocols to ensure the health of bell ringers and donors.

However, the organization also encourages people to donate electronically. People can give any amount by texting “KETTLES” to 91999. Donations can also be made using Amazon Alexa by saying Alexa, donate to The Salvation Army," then specifying the amount.

People can use Apple Pay or Google Pay to donate at red kettles during the month of November.

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