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Salvation Army puts safety plan in place for bell ringers and donations

For the 2020 season, the Salvation Army has made a list of changes to make sure both those donating and volunteers feel safe about the process.
Published: Nov. 19, 2020 at 2:34 PM CST
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) -

The Red Kettle Campaign is back for another year, allowing both volunteers and donors to give back. For the 2020 season, the Salvation Army has made a list of changes to make sure both those donating and volunteers feel safe about the process.

This year only two bell ringers or small families will be at each kettle and have been asked to stand 6 feet away from the bucket itself, giving donors room to drop off their money. Ann Brigham the Development Director for the Wausau Salvation Army said volunteers have been equipped with sanitation wipes to use on the kettle between donations, and the bell before returning to the Salvation Army.

“We are very cognizant of keeping people safe because you know what this here with the people that are, you know, laid off or their hours are reduced at work we know the needs going to be greater,” Brigham explained.

Each volunteer is also given a sealed back with a mask, gloves, hand sanitizer, and an apron to wear. While the apron must be returned to the Salvation Army, the organization washes them every single night for the next day.

On top of all their in-person precautions, this year the Marathon County bell ringers are also pushing for people to consider electronic donations if they don’t feel comfortable getting too close to the kettle. At each location, a sign with a QR code and NFC tag is available for anyone to scan. That scan will link people to giveredkettle.org

This year the Salvation Army is hoping to raise more money than ever before as the pandemic has left more people in need and out of jobs.

“Christmas is a time where we all like to be together. So finding ways that we can connect is just so important. Hearing those bells ringing is something that can bring us together,” Brigham said.

For more information on how to get involved or donate visit the Salvation Army website.

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