CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte is kicking off its annual Christmas giving program, the Red Kettle Campaign, Friday morning at Carolina Place Mall.
The non-profit is holding a brief media-only event at 11 a.m. to launch the campaign, and this event will include live holiday music from a Salvation Army brass ensemble and a ceremonial first contribution to the Red Kettle Campaign.
Salvation Army officials encourage anyone who hears the bell or sees the red kettles this holiday season to donate anything they can to help those in need in our community this holiday season.
History of the Red Kettle Campaign:
The campaign was started in 1891 by Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee as a way to help poor individuals in San Francisco that were going hungry around the holidays.
McFee decided he would resolve this problem by providing a free Christmas dinner for the poverty-stricken and destitute.
In order to do this, McFee knew he needed to come up with a fundraising idea and this is where the Red Kettle Campaign was born.
From his time as a sailor in in Liverpool, England, McFee recalled a large, iron kettle called “Simpson’s Pot” where anyone who passed by would toss in a coin or two to help the poor.
McFee took inspiration from this idea and placed a similar pot at the Oakland Ferry Landing at the foot of Market Street with a sign that read “Keep the Pot Boiling.”
Through doing this, McFee was able to collect the money he needed to see that people without were properly fed that Christmas.
Captain McFee’s kettle idea lives on years later as a tradition of the Salvation Army across the world.
Proceeds made now through the Red Kettle Campaign benefit the local programs of the Salvation Army including care for homeless individuals, mentoring for at-risk youth, and other critical services to those in need.