Salvation Army's Kettle Campaign Still Successful, Iconic
Salvation Army's Kettle Campaign Remains Successful and Iconic
Last year Americans dropped $117 million into the Salvation Army's red kettles, continuing to make the Christmas holiday practice one of the nation's most successful forms of charity, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
The 2006 figure surpassed the 2005 total by $6 million and was $26 million more than was donated five years ago. What's more, the increase has come at a time when the Salvation Army and other large national charities have updated their Web sites and been more aggressive in emphasizing online giving. Despite that emphasis, online donations to the Red Kettle campaign in 2005 were only $112,000, or about 0.1 percent of actual bucket contributions.
According to Dwight Burlingame, associate director of the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, no other fundraising appeal resonates as thoroughly with the public as the army's red kettles. Moreover, it's difficult for other charities to replicate the iconic campaign's success, which derives in part from a unique mix of bell-ringing, holiday spirit, and the organization's history. "It's really very much a brand," said Burlingame.
"The Red Kettle campaigns work," said Salvation Army spokeswoman Melissa Temme. "Though we're always looking toward the future, these campaigns are 115 years old, and we don't have any indication they are outdated."