Salvation Army toy drive trying to meet ‘big jump’ in requests

Rotary Club of Yellowknife member Brian George, and Debra George, volunteer at a kettle at the Yellowknife Co-op
Brian George and Debra George volunteer at a Salvation Army kettle at the Yellowknife Co-op in 2019. Photo: James O'Connor

Yellowknife’s Salvation Army is asking the public for more toy donations and fundraising help having failed to reach 50 percent of its goal in the run-up to Christmas.

In a press release on Friday, the charity said its annual toy drive – in which 120 to 170 toys are normally donated – has received a higher-than-usual number of requests for help this Christmas.

At the drive’s launch in November, Salvation Army Yellowknife executive director Jason Brinson attributed that to the current state of the economy.

But the group’s kettle campaign, part of a now-iconic national movement featuring the symbol of a kettle to invite festive donations, is struggling. According to the Salvation Army, its Yellowknife fundraising figure has reached only 44 percent of this year’s goal.



On Friday, Brinson asked people to either donate toys, donate at a kettle or take on a shift fundraising at a kettle to help.

“We want to be sure that every family that has come to us for help this Christmas has gifts for their kids under the tree,” he was quoted as saying.

“Things are tight for so many, so every donation or kettle shift is a blessing for not just today, but all year.”

If you want to volunteer, you can call (867) 920-HOPE to sign up.

If you are able to donate toys, the Salvation Army asks that new toys be brought unwrapped to Northwestel’s downtown Yellowknife office or the Salvation Army itself. Toys should be intended for children aged up to 13 years.