The Salvation Army of Greater Rochester has kicked off its annual Red Kettle Christmas Campaign.
Officials gathered at Marketplace Mall to ring in the event.
But more are people shopping on line these days, and Director of Monroe County Operations for the Salvation Army, Major Douglas Hart, says that is having an impact.
“Absolutely, and it’s making us think of the future, too. We need to plan for other avenues of giving. We do have online giving,” he said.
People can go to RochesterSalvationArmy.org to donate, or RegisterToRing.com to volunteer to ring a bell.
Hart says this year’s goal is $400,000 for a variety of programs.
“We run four different shelters, we have an emergency assistance program, we serve young people all year round with after school programs and during the summer we have full time summer programs for youth,” he said.
Last year, the Salvation Army of Greater Rochester provided more than 36,000 meals to the hungry, almost 30,000 nights of shelter, and served more than 5,000 people through the Christmas Assistance Program, which provides toys for children and food for a special holiday meal.
Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo challenged the community to give what it can, or consider donating some time.
The Salvation Army says they need around 8,000 community members to volunteer to ring bells.
State Senator Rich Funke says that red ringing bell serves as a reminder that not everyone has it as good as you do, and can serve as a small voice for those who might not have one: