Return home

Local Red Kettle Campaign aids thousands in area

Nicole A. Hawley
Staff writer
email / twitter
Posted 11/30/22

Rome Salvation Army is ringing in the holidays with its traditional Red Kettle Campaign, raising money for special community programming and to help those in need through the annual Red Kettle …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Local Red Kettle Campaign aids thousands in area

Posted

ROME — Rome Salvation Army is ringing in the holidays with its traditional Red Kettle Campaign, raising money for special community programming and to help those in need through the annual Red Kettle Campaign.

This year’s campaign is called, “Love Beyond.”

“We’re hoping to help the community see the connection between the Red Kettle and the services we’re able to provide all year,” said Lt. Scott B. Swires, co-commanding officer of Rome Salvation Army, 410 W. Dominick St. “This campaign alone will provide 20% of our budget from now until next October.”

Among those helped:

  • The community of Rome helped to sponsor the following through the 2021 Red Kettle Campaign. This set of statistics is from December 2021 to September 2022.
  • 17,820 people were assisted in Rome.
  • 32,265 meals were provided.
  • 702 Comfort Kits were given to seniors.
  • 240 children were given 720 toys and 1,200 clothing items for Christmas.”This year we are aiming to help 500 children,” Swires said; and
  • More than 2,000 one-on-one counseling hours were spent with adults and teens through care management programs.

Bell Ringing Volunteers

People can become volunteer bell ringers by visiting savolunteer.org. There are indoor locations available. Most shifts are four hours — 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 2-6 p.m.

“We encourage volunteers to sign up for back-to-back shifts if they would like to spend more time at the kettle,” Swires added.

Current Rome locations are:

  • AmeriCU on Black River Boulevard.
  • AmeriCU on Hill Road.
  • Grand Union on Erie Boulevard West.
  • Market 32 by Price Chopper on Black River Boulevard.
  • Both entrances of Walmart on Rome-Taberg Road.

Tiny Mighty Countertop Kettle

“We also have counter-top kettle stands at a variety of retailers in the area,” Lt. Swires said. “We encourage people to support our local businesses and donate all at the same time.”

Countertop locations are:

Spressos Coffee Cookies & Cake

  • Arby’s
  • Copper City Brewing
  • Grande’s Pizzeria
  • Teddy’s
  • LaRoma Pizzeria
  • Woodforest National Bank in Walmart
  • Berkshire Bank on Erie Boulevard West.

“We are attempting something new with our countertop kettles this year,” Swires said. “Whichever countertop kettle location raises the most in a given week will be awarded a golden kettle to use for the following week.”

The winner will be announced on Rome Salvation Army’s social media sites.

Effort has long history

In 1891, Salvation Army Capt. Joseph McFee was distraught because so many poor individuals in San Francisco were going hungry, according to the Salvation Army USA. During the holiday season, he decided to provide a free Christmas dinner for the destitute and poverty-stricken. He only had one major hurdle to overcome — funding the project.

McFee remembered how at Stage Landing, where the boats came in, there was a large, iron kettle called “Simpson’s Pot” where passers-by tossed a coin or two to help the poor.

The next day Captain McFee placed a similar pot at the Oakland Ferry Landing at the foot of Market Street. Beside the pot, he placed a sign that read, “Keep the Pot Boiling.” He soon had the money to see that the needy people were properly fed at Christmas.

Captain McFee’s kettle idea launched a tradition that has spread not only throughout the United States, but all across the world.

Comments

No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here