Dover Salvation Army in Serious Need of Red Kettle Volunteers - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dover Salvation Army in Serious Need of Red Kettle Volunteers

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DOVER, Del. (WBOC) - Donations are very low this year for the Dover Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign, but it's not because of a lack of generosity. It's for a lack of volunteers.

Marguerite Casey was ringing the bell next to a red kettle at the Redner's on DE 8 in Dover on a recent morning. She's been ringing for the Salvation Army since 1995.

"We enjoy it," she said. "It's for the good of the people, plus you get to socialize. People share a lot of great stories with you, and it's for a good cause."

This shift for Casey is in the middle of the day in the middle of the week. It is a time frame that has been particularly challenging for the Salvation Army this year.

"We don't have as many people during the week is what the problem is. Saturdays are pretty good. But we just don't have the individuals to stand during the week," said Dana Smith, with the Dover Salvation Army. "Almost always the evenings are full. People getting off work will stand from 5 to 9. We don't even have that this year."

Smith says that's a big problem for the organization, which needs to raise $51,000 in the next 10 days. She says it's not like people aren't giving.

"The kettles that we do have out are bringing in a lot of money. We had a group standing at Sam's Club on Saturday. They brought in $1,100 in one day. Normally a good kettle is $50 an hour. They're averaging over $100 an hour this year. The donations are out there. We just don't have enough people."

Casey has seen that the donations are out there when she's out there.

"The people are generous, and everyone has been really nice," said Casey.
Red kettles are the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Salvation Army. Last year the Dover arm of the organization fell well short of its goal for the kettles, making this year especially critical.

The Salisbury Salvation Army says it is doing better than last year as far as the number of volunteers, but the organization is seeing a shortage in the Berlin and Ocean City areas. On the Mid-Shore, the commanding officer there tells WBOC she is not even half way to a fundraising goal of $100,000 and is in great need of volunteers, especially during the week.

Click here for more information on volunteering in Dover. Click here for more information on volunteering in Maryland.

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