A Salvation Army donation stand, with it’s new electronic donation method advertised on it, sits in the Independent grocery store where it will open for donations on Saturday. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Whitehorse Salvation Army launches annual kettle campaign

The organization is aiming to raise $80,000 and will have credit-debit terminals to take donations

The Salvation Army kicked off its annual kettle campaign in Whitehorse Nov. 14 with a bigger fundraising goal than ever before — and a new way for Yukoners to give.

This year, the organization is aiming to raise $80,000, $2,000 more than its 2017 kettle campaign target.

In an interview Nov. 15, Whitehorse Salvation Army executive director Ian McKenzie said that he’s confident that Yukoners will be able to help the organization hit the mark.

“(It’s the) highest we’ve had and we’re hoping to see some good support from the community of the campaign,” he said.

“We find that the people in this area are very generous when we compare to some of the other communities we see across Canada on a per capita basis, we get very good support from the people of the Whitehorse area, and so we’re confident we can reach our goal.”

Last year, he added, the Salvation Army actually raised around $101,000 during its kettle campaign, something he described as “unusual.”

“We did have a couple of large, anonymous donations come in which sort of pushed things higher than normal and we don’t expect that be the standard every time,” he said.

The Salvation Army uses the money raised during kettle campaigns to support the programs and services it offers in the Whitehorse area.

There will be six kettles located around Whitehorse until Dec. 24 — and this year, shoppers who don’t carry cash or change won’t have an excuse to not donate.

For the first time in the Yukon, two card terminals are accompanying the classic clear-plastic kettles.

“People will be able to (donate) by tapping or swiping a debit or a credit card,” McKenzie said, noting that the organization is trying to keep up with how modern consumers are spending their money.

One of the terminals will be paired with the kettle stationed at Wykes Your Independent Grocer, while the other will float around the other five locations based on traffic and demand.

Besides donations, the Salvation Army is also looking for volunteers to help man the kettles, McKenzie said. Volunteer shifts last two hours and the Salvation Army needs people to fill 1,900 hours of time.

“If people have a couple of hours they’re willing to give, are able to give, to volunteer on the kettles, that would be great,” McKenzie said.

Anyone interested in volunteering is asked to contact the kettle campaign coordinator at 335-0571.

Contact Jackie Hong at jackie.hong@yukon-news.com

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