Victoria Salvation Army to start Christmas Kettle fundraiser Friday December 3

The Victoria Salvation Army got off to a late start this year due to needing more bell ringer volunteers

VICTORIA, Texas – The Victoria Salvation Army had a late start to their annual Christmas Kettle fundraiser this year because of a lack of volunteers, however, Captain Kenny Jones, the Commanding Officer of the Victoria Salvation Army says that Victorians can expect to hear the bells this Friday, December 3.

“This has been one of the toughest years I’ve seen as far as being able to hire folks, so we’re getting a bit of a late start, we’ll be in full swing on the third, which is this coming Friday,” says Captain Jones.

You can find the bell ringers at Walgreens, both Walmarts, Hobby Lobby, Big Lots, and some spots at the Victoria Mall, as well as Sams. They will be out taking donations until Christmas Eve and expect to see them every day except Sunday. Captain Jones says that they use a hybrid of volunteers and paid positions, with bell ringer pay at $9 an hour. Those interested in signing up to be a bell ringer can either be paid or choose to just volunteer. Although it might seem easy Jones says that it can get tiring to ring that bell over and over.

“You would think it’d be easy right, you just ring a bell, but it’s fairly tedious. I don’t know if you’ve ever stood in one location for four or eight hours, even two hours, can be fairly tedious,” says Captain Jones.

Captain Jones says that there is a culture that surrounds being a bell-ringer, having ties to American history.

“Being a bell-ringer is a part of history, a part of America. The song silver bells is about the Salvation Army bell ringers, and when you hear those silver bells you know it’s that season of the year to begin to give back,” says Captain Jones.

The Salvation Army of Victoria has already raised $5,000 through sponsorships of the kettles. They raised around $64,000 last year through the kettles, despite the pandemic, and hope to raise that same amount this year.

Captain Jones says bell ringers can be hired starting at the age of 16, so any high schoolers in need of some extra holiday cash or service hours for various clubs (National Honor Society, Key Club, Student Council) can call the Salvation Army and sign up to be a bell ringer.

To sign up to be a bell ringer call the Salvation Army at 361-576-1297.