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Salvation Army needs bell ringers for San Antonio

“Usually, we start getting calls around early October from our returning paid bell ringers. This year, nobody was knocking at the door."

SAN ANTONIO — The Salvation Army is looking for more than 100 bell ringers to work at sites across Bexar County and New Braunfels. There are both volunteer and paid positions available.

The Salvation Army’s largest annual fund-raiser, the Red Kettle Campaign officially kicks off this Friday and runs through Christmas Eve.

It's the oldest annual charitable fundraiser of its kind in the U.S. and helps raise money for those who need it most – providing toys for kids, coats for the homeless, food for the hungry and social service programs year-round.

The goal is to have every site staffed every hour of every day. Red Kettles can be found at most local Walmart and Sam’s Club stores, as well as Hobby Lobby, Bass Pro Shops, as well as select Walgreens and mall locations. 

Kettle coordinators said they are struggling to not only fill volunteer spots, but paid positions as well.

“Usually, we start getting calls around early October from our returning paid bell ringers,” Major Stephanie Sills said. “This year, nobody was knocking at the door. We even contacted many of the bell ringers who have worked the last three years, but a lot of them told us they just don’t want to work.”

Anyone interested in volunteering as a bell ringer can click here and click on the “Register to Ring” tab. Those interested in becoming a paid worker, can call (210) 352-2000 or apply in person at 521 West Elmira Street between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.

“The worst-case scenario is that some of our locations could remain empty at various times,” Sills said. “During periods when a bell is silent, a kettle cannot raise any money."