The Salvation Army is a religious organization whose main goal is to assess the needs of the communities in which they serve, build local programs designed to offer relief of those challenges and invest in the development of these neighborhoods with continued support. Since 1865, the Salvation Army has annually assisted more than 25 million Americans and currently serves in 131 countries across the globe.
While volunteering, Claire Banaszak, a technical recruiter, was involved in the Salvation Army’s very well-known Red Kettle Campaign. Volunteers of this campaign are recognizable by their Salvation Army apron, cheerful bell, bright red bucket and the most important, a welcoming smile!
- I was hoping I could be a bright spot in people’s day while they were out and about. I was also really excited to be a part of Salvation Army’s “Love Beyond” campaign and add to their initiative of showing others unconditional love and support. Salvation Army brings help to those who need it in so many ways, and I was happy that I had the chance to be a part of that!
- What do you believe is your greatest strength and how did that help you in your volunteer opportunities? I’m lucky enough to be a naturally empathetic person, and that helped me while I was volunteering to really connect with the people around me, even if it was just a quick “hi & bye” interaction. Volunteering is always better with people, and even more special when you make a unique connection with those people!
- What was your key takeaway from this experience? Being a part of something larger than yourself has an amazing effect that is hard to put into words. All I did was ring a bell and talk to people for part of my day but knowing that all the money collected during that time was going towards holiday meals for people in my city, is powerful. It made me excited to use my next Liift Day for another cause I am passionate about!
The Red Kettle Campaign is important in raising funds that go back into the community to aid the most vulnerable with food, shelter, and other support necessary. Claires time during her shift was important to giving back to her community and brightening the day of all she encountered.
To learn more about the history of this tradition, visit this link here.