Salvation Army's Kettle Campaign kicks off using 'tap to give' feature for second year in a row
It's only the first week of the Salvation Army's Kettle Campaign in the Fredericton-Oromocto region and they're already behind on donations.
"We are trending down but that's compared to last year, but we are trending down by about $5,000 actually in the last four days," said Maj. Dan Dearing,of the Salvation Army in Fredericton.
The Salvation Army is hoping technology can make up the difference, in change.
"As you see right here, we have one of the smallest devices. It's called a tip-tap or a tap to give," said Dearing.
It’s the second year for the "tap to give" technology, after the legion introduced it to their poppy campaign last year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Tap is replacing one-on-one interactions and it's not entirely the pandemic to blame, according to a business professor.
"People are facing what's called 'time poverty' so, it's going to be very interesting to see what happens in the face of being able to get volunteers in the future. It's been a little harder in the last few years for some of these charities and hopefully there will be a bit of a rejuvenation of people giving their time to some of these very worthwhile causes," said Ed McHugh, a professor of business.
While changing with the times to tap, McHugh says losing volunteers could still hurt the bottom line.
"Unfortunately, it'll hurt their chances. Face it. There are some people that will readily give regardless of what the situation is, but there are a lot of people for whom there is a guilt factor of walking by another human being and not giving to a very reputable charity. And so, not having that face there, I think will diminish the returns cause most of us are driven by seeing the faces of human beings asking for help,” McHugh said.
With 89 fewer volunteers this year in just the Fredericton region, there's no choice but to tap.
"It means for us that we have to, more and more go this way and I think that the traditional kettle will stay around but more and more we will have to rely on this kind of means because we find that we're not getting many of the younger generation because everyone who serves on a kettle volunteers their time, which also becomes a piece of giving,” Dearing said.
Last year the Salvation Army in the Fredericton region raised over their $150,000 goal, at $190,000.
This year, they've set their sights at $175,000.