Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023 |
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LIHU‘E — Traditional or high tech? Contributors to The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle campaign now have a choice.
The Red Kettles, which now dot the Kaua‘i retail landscape, each carry a sign with a Quick Response (or QR) code, which allows smart phone users to make a mobile contribution.
“The QR codes at the kettles will send smart phone users to an interface, which allows them to make a mobile donation,” said Major Mario Reyes of The Salvation Army, Lihu‘e Corps. “It’s very similar to a text donation, providing donors with another quick and easy option for their Red Kettle gift.”
Reyes said the digital code within each QR decal is customized so the contribution will automatically be designated to either the Lihu‘e or Hanapepe Corps.
“I didn’t know that,” said Steven Braun of the Kaua‘i High School Key Club, who was volunteering for Red Kettle duty Friday night outside the Big Kmart store. “I don’t think I have an app for that.”
Not having an app is now not an excuse as the new signs also provide for a “Text to Give” code, which allows contributors the option of texting their donation to the local Salvation Army Corps community centers.
This is done by texting messages “I give Hawai‘i Lihu‘e,” or “I Give Hawai‘i Hanapepe” to 80888.
The contribution appears on the user’s next cellular phone billing and the funds are sent to The Salvation Army on payment of the bill.
“There is nothing high tech, or cutting edge about helping Kaua‘i’s ‘ohana,” Reyes said in a Salvation Army release. “The Salvation Army is excited to add another easy way for holiday shoppers to make a donation.”
Despite the new high tech approach, some shoppers continue to prefer the traditional method of dropping change into the familiar icon of the holidays — those at Big Kmart were serenaded with Christmas carols from the group of Kaua‘i High School Key Club boys.
Launched on Nov. 17 at Kukui Grove Center, the Salvation Army is still looking for volunteers to adopt a kettle at sites in Kapa‘a, Lihu‘e, Koloa and Waimea.
Volunteer requirements are simple. A group of six individuals, working two-hour shifts from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., take care of a kettle for a day.
Funds from the Red Kettle program are used for Salvation Army programs, including Christmas Assistance, Kokua Soup Kitchen, children’s programs, year-round emergency food pantry, family assistance programs and more.
The Kaua‘i High School Key Club, enjoying the Kaua‘i Christmas Parade at Kukui Grove last week, said they have adopted kettles at the Times Supermarket, Long’s Drugs and the Big Kmart on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through Christmas Eve. The students are on-site from 5 to 9 p.m. due to school.
Volunteers can call 245-2571 to volunteer in the Lihu‘e or Kapa‘a areas. Volunteers wanting to serve on the Westside can call 335-5441.
“By ringing the bells at the red kettles, you will not only ‘ring’ in the true spirit of Christmas, but you will also be helping many of Kaua‘i’s families in need,” Reyes said.
For those who want to contribute outside of the red kettles, gifts can be mailed to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 1431, Lihu‘e, HI 96766, or The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 540, Hanapepe, HI 96716.
Contributions can also be made by visiting www.salvationarmyhawaii.org.
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