AUSTIN, Minn-The Salvation Army is gearing up to roll out its red kettle campaign. This year, some of those bell ringers will be getting paid for their efforts. On November 29th the Salvation Army in Austin will kick off their red kettle fundraising campaign. Stacy Wisemore is the volunteer coordinator for the Austin location she says every year it's a struggle to find volunteers but this year things are extremely slow. She adds volunteers play a big role in donations.
“Fun fact as far as kettles for every two hours someone volunteers at a kettle stand we raise $65."
“That $65 goes directly to Austin Salvation army programs including the food shelf, rent, and utilities program and prescription program. The mission is clear, but the volunteers are in short supply. That's required the organization to hire bell ringers.
"I would encourage them to donate their time because their time can be more beneficial to us,” Wisemore said. “
Last year she hired three bell ringers for $10.50 an hour.
Wisemore said hiring bell ringers is a last resort. The organization would prefer to maintain a volunteer bell-ringing team.
Rochester Salvation Army has a similar setup. Mason City Salvation army doesn't pay their kettle bell ringers although they have looked into this idea.