Today, I was able to volunteer an hour, just an hour of my time to ring the Salvation Army bell, and literally did so, with bells on …my red velvety Santa hat.
It was ring, ring, tinkle-ling…while I was singing in my head and sometimes out loud.
They really have this thing down to a science – rules and all. Of course, the first rule of collecting funds for a charity is the well-known rule – all the money goes to the charity. I know people wonder, but really, they know it is tempting for some, so they do their part and are sure to lock the kettle. They also advise the lesser trained volunteers with a list of rules that even the best of the best could learn a thing or two.
Here are some of the highlights:
- Do not walk away from the kettle. (I was wondering – even in our little boro – if it was safe to walk up to a car to collect cash from someone nice enough to donate. Was this some kind of ruse and someone was going to come up behind me and take the whole thing while I collected a twenty?)
- Don’t sit down. (Makes sense, we only had to do an hour.)
- Don’t eat. (You may drink hot chocolate or coffee, which is nice to acknowledge – it is usually cold! Plus, it is hard to say no especially with the kind offer of free coffee or tea from the Langhorne Coffee House owner to all the volunteers.)
- Don’t smoke. (It’s bad for you anyway. Right?)
- No using cell phone for calls or texts – unless it is an emergency. (I don’t wear a watch, so I actually ran late, feeling guilty that I was checking my phone to see what time it was and even though I had a sick kid at home, it was the client call for which I was late – oops – he totally understood.)
- Say “Thank You and Merry Christmas!” (Of course, we should be polite and it is Christmas after all.)
- SMILE! (Always a great idea.)
It is that time of year, when people are willing to help and show up, with bells on literally and figuratively…helping in today’s case the Salvation Army who’s goal is “Doing the Most Good”™ – helping those who really can’t help themselves. Thank you for the opportunity and Merry Christmas.
~ Dawn aka Hat Girl
PS I met Santa today. So, really, who is the lucky one?