Kathy MacDonald (centre), her daughter Kyla and her grandson Drake (age one and a half) collect for the Salvation Army in front of No Frills. (SONJA DRINKWATER / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)

Salvation Army Kettle Campaign raises $77K in Port Alberni

Requests for assistance rose as forestry strike continued

The Salvation Army in Port Alberni has wrapped up a successful Kettle Campaign, raising almost $80,000 for families in need during the Christmas season.

The community raised $77,000 in total, all of which was distributed locally. Although the campaign fell short of its $100,000 goal, Captain Michael Ramsay said he’s still feeling “blessed” by the support.

“It speaks to Port Alberni as being a community with a really big heart,” said Ramsay.

With the donations, the Salvation Army was able to provide hampers to almost 500 families, or close to 1,000 people. These hampers included both food and toys for children.

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Ramsay did admit that the requests for hampers went up this year, due to a number of economic factors. Workers at Western Forest Products have been on strike since July 2019, and Mosaic Forest Management announced an early winter shutdown of its forestry operations back in November.

“The need was certainly apparent,” said Ramsay. “And the community really came together to meet that need. It was such a blessing.”

He offered thanks to everyone who stopped by the kettles during the holiday season and everyone who offered to ring a bell.

Although the Kettle Campaign has now come to an end, the Salvation Army in Port Alberni still provides help to those in need throughout the rest of the year.

“The needs continue throughout the entire year,” Ramsay explained. “We at the Salvation Army work with children and families throughout the year and we’re always looking for those willing and able to help.”

Anyone interested in volunteering or making a donation can contact the Salvation Army’s main office at 250-723-6913 or visit in person at 4835 Argyle St.


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