Red Shield Appeal Takes to the Streets
Collectors for the annual Red Shield Street Appeal had smiles on their faces despite rough weather this year, all for raising funds going towards Community Ministries centres across New Zealand.
Red Shield went full steam ahead early, with one percent target reached before the street appeal week even commenced. Thames reached almost 50 percent of their target before the beginning of street appeal week, earning over $700 in one hour at the pubs. Oamaru Corps doubled their take from last year and their fundraising events over the week included a silent auction and a Family Store high tea. All corps in New Zealand worked hard collecting, but Mosgiel was the first corps to reach their target during street appeal week.
Regional Relationship Manager and South Island Red Shield Street Appeal Coordinator Peter Lobb said, ‘There’s no better feeling than doing this together. Each night as I look at social media and see all of the committed people from around Aotearoa [New Zealand] out there doing the mahi (work), it does my heart good.’ He thanked all collectors for their efforts.
Collectors gave hand-out cards to people who had no cash but still wanted to donate and were advised by collectors to go online and search for their local centre to directly donate.
One of the collectors was 98-year-old Trudy Mawdsley from New Lynn Corps, who sat outside New Lynn Countdown happily collecting.
Four schools also collected for Red Shield, with the incentive of five Chromebooks as a prize for the largest amount raised, and an additional five Chromebooks for any schools that ‘do a stand-up job’, regardless of funds raised.
Another initiative was a Red Shield Quiz Night in Manukau, with all ticket sales and proceeds going towards the appeal.
There were many inspiring stories that came out of Red Shield collecting week this year. Assistant National Red Shield Street Appeal Manager Raewyn Butler who collected across Auckland said she was encouraged to hear many comments from people who donated, about how The Salvation Army had helped them and their families.
Corps Assistant Tala Keiller from Glenfield Corps and Raewyn were collecting at Birkenhead RSA and a man told them he thought The Salvation Army was ‘dead and gone’. Raewyn assured him they definitely weren’t. He recalled the days when the War Cry was sold in pubs every Friday night, and there was always a glass of coca cola on the counter for the person selling the publication.
Family Stores were also a big part of supporting the cause and seeking donations. This year, a Red Shield Week trophy was awarded to the ‘Highest-Earning Red Shield Week Family Store’ for the month of May.
Queenstown Family Store created a Red Shield display, with mannequins dressed in red and white and many Salvation Army buckets and red shields displayed in the area.
National Red Shield Street Appeal Manager Kay Worth was thankful for everyone who volunteered their time during street appeal week. ‘I just want to say a massive thank you to team New Zealand for their outstanding efforts this appeal—we have been hit with bad weather, double bookings and despite this, we soldiered on,’ she said.