04 January 2018

All ten of the community red kettle match day offerings for the Salvation Army in the Fox Cities were met & exceeded making for a successful 2017 fund raising campaign.

UPDATE: So blessed to share that thanks to all our wonderful donors, volunteers and community supporters that on January 31, 2018 we met and surpassed our 2017 Christmas Campaign goal - raising $1,125,924 here in the Fox Cities.  Thanks to all.

Volunteer bell ringers were critical to the fund drive’s success with a total of 8,683 hours of time donated at the kettles- a ten percent increase from the previous year in the Fox Cities.

The ten special match days accounted for $155,000 in public offering of which the donors responded with gifts of $328,316 at the red kettles making for a total of $483,316 - a fifteen percent overall increase from the 2016 matching gift campaign.

The $328,316 in donor kettle gifts was up $58,150 from the previous 2016 fund drive an increase of 20 percent in gift giving.  The kettle campaign went from Nov. 10 to Dec. 23, 2017 with the first match day being the Bassett Mechanical $5,000 match offering on Nov. 25 to which $21,335 was donated by the public making for a $26,335 total.

Our kettle campaign certainly benefited from an improving overall economy from the previous year’s totals. Somewhat favorable winter weather conditions helped to bring our generous donors and great volunteers out to the kettles for all of our match days. We are so blessed to have the support of all our match day corporations and foundations for their complete support of their time to ring the bells and their match gifts to inspire such generosity here in the Fox Cities.

Numerous individuals, schools, church groups, businesses, service clubs and organizations  donated their time to help drive the fund-raising campaign including the annual High School “Battle of the Bells” and the National Realtor Associations’ Realtor Ring Day” to encourage ringers at the red kettles. Kaukauna High School won the coveted "Battle of the Bells" trophy (again) with 267 hours of ringing and Appleton East High School DECA were the winners of the "Battle of the Bells" social media component. The eleven area high schools who participated in the 2017 edition of "Battle of the Bells" contributed a total of 760 hours of volunteer time. Thank you all.

The largest match day offering of the campaign was made by the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region which also saw the largest response from donors at the red kettles on December 22. The $40,000 match offering made by twenty-one charitable funds generated a season high of $96,920 at kettles making for a total of $136,920 to help local individuals in need.

The Thrivent Financial $25,000 match day on December 1 had $51,702 in donations during their annual kettle challenge, which made for a total of $76,702 in the kettles. Now after fourteen years the Thrivent day has helped to generate over $3 million ($3,080,408.) at the kettles. Thrivent Financial’s Red Kettle Match Day Challenge, which began in 2004, remains the largest continuous community matching day event for The Salvation Army in the United States.   In 2008 the Fox Cities’ Thrivent match day set a record dollar total when it generated close to one-half million dollars. ($497,423)

A special two-day $25,000 kettle challenge in memory of Jack and Ethel Keller offered by the J.J. Keller Foundation inspired $39,135 in gifts, which combined for a total of $64,135 last December 9 and 12.

Two new match day sponsors joined the slate of kettle challenges for the campaign. On Dec. 13, the inaugural Nicolet National Bank Foundation $5,000 match generated $8,450 making for a total of $13,450 for the Salvation Army.  Duell Financial Services first ever $5,000 match provided $17,716 in donor gifts for an $22,716 total on Dec. 19.

The annual Kimberly-Clark match day of $20,000 at the kettles on Dec. 15 had public gifts of $37,175 making for $57,175 total the fourth largest day for the campaign for the Fox Cities Salvation Army. 

  Thanks to generous community participation and Capital Credit Union’s          $25,000 dollar-for-dollar match, single-day donations for the Salvation Army     Fox Cities totaled $56,858 on Friday, December 8. In the spirit of “Doing the   Right Thing” in their communities, more than 40 Capital employee-volunteers      also rang in the holidays as bell ringers at 9 different Fox Cities red kettles   that day.

  This was Capital’s 8th year of collaborating with the Salvation Army-Fox Cities    as a Red Kettle Match Day sponsor. Match Days help maximize donations for    the charity in order to help families living in poverty in the Fox Cities. Capital      Credit Union Match Days have generated more than $389,000 since 2010.

  “This marks the 100th year of ringing the bells in the Appleton area to help       families in need,” said Robb Waugus, development director for the Salvation     Army in the Fox Cities. “Now in its 127th year, the Red Kettle campaign began   in 1891 is one of the longest-running and most recognizable fundraising efforts   in the world,” he said.


The last match of the bell season was the annual WE Energies Foundation’s $5,000 match that saw $24,025 of donated gifs for a total $29,025 on Dec. 23.

The annual red kettle campaign’s goal of $500,000 is a portion of the faith-based social services agency’s overall $1.1 million dollar Christmas fund-raising goal for 2017. Which accounts for up to 60 percent of the local Salvation Army’s operating budget.  The goal is comprised of red kettle donations, mail appeals and year-end contributions.  These gifts provide assistance to thousands’ of individuals in need during Christmas and throughout the year.

To see a complete listing of the 2017 Kettle Match offerings and results follow this link: 

To learn more on the recent Christmas assistance provided to local families in need including Toys for Tots and the Adopt-a-Family community programs follow this link: http://www.safoxcities.org/fox_cities/Christmas_Activites