'Saint Grand' donates at red kettle for 12th year; Kettle Campaign still falling short

Dec 14, 2022

The Salvation Army discovered a familiar donation today of $1,000 in a red kettle in the north metro area of the Twin Cities, suggesting that the anonymous and affectionately-named donor “Saint Grand” is blessing the social services organization for a 12th consecutive year.

The philanthropist known as Saint Grand started donating at the red kettles in 2011, with numerous gifts of $1,000 dropped in various locations. Multiple donations of $1,000 continued for several years—always in new $100 bills—earning the unknown donor the Saint Grand moniker. And even after 12 Christmases, his or her identity continues to remain a mystery.

Unfortunately, overall giving at Twin Cities’ red kettles has slowed versus last year, and is currently running about $250,000 behind.

“Saint Grand is always a bright spot during our kettle season, for which we’re very grateful,” said Lt. Colonel Dan Jennings, Salvation Army Northern Division commander. “Unfortunately, the kettle campaign is running behind, and we may not be able to help as many people as we had hoped.”

Jennings attributes the challenges to things like higher prices for essentials like food, gas, rent and utilities, causing fewer people to drive to volunteer shifts and fewer people to donate at the kettles.

The Twin Cities Salvation Army hopes to raise $2 million during its 2022 kettle campaign, which runs through Dec. 24. Donations made at local red kettles are always used for programs to assist people here in the Twin Cities. In addition, funds raised during the holiday giving season help to provide services all year round. Sign up to ring

"We live in a community of compassionate and caring people, and we've seen how immensely generous they can be throughout our 135-year relationship. We're grateful for all the support we receive," Jennings said.

All red kettles are now outfitted with safe digital pay options, including Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, Venmo, and QR code scans. 

Sign up to ring bells

Registration is open for the 2022 bell ringing season, with thousands of shifts unfilled. Sign up to ring

The Salvation Army needs more bell ringers than ever this holiday season due to rising inflation. Your time volunteering at a red kettle will help local families who cannot afford the rising costs of food, gas and housing. (Read why Vikings wide receiver K.J. Osborn supports The Salvation Army and sign up for a chance to ring bells with him).

Bell ringing is a fun and easy way to make a big difference, with hundreds of kettle locations throughout the Twin Cities, Greater Minnesota and North Dakota. Recruit your friends, family and coworkers to join you and raise even more money for families in need.

This holiday season, The Salvation Army is calling on all of our supporters to Love Beyond. #LoveBeyond is a national Salvation Army campaign that encourages people to put love above all else, in order to show families in need that love exists beyond their most difficult situations – be it hunger, overdue bills, eviction, addiction, and other hardships. Join us by giving a donationsigning up to volunteer, or ringing bells at a Red Kettle

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