Ring the Bell-Salvation Army

Doing the most good, is the slogan on the chest of the aprons you wear while ringing bells for the Salvation Army. What an amazing mission and one that I am honored to wear as our family gets to help do our part.

It is an honor to ring the bell and one that my family has grown to love. This tradition started years ago as I took my volleyball team to Hy-Vee on a very cold night and we took turns ringing the bell. At the time my girls were only 4 and 6 years old, but they loved every moment of it and can still recall those memories. They loved getting to be with the “big girls” and I am so thankful for the amazing example these girls got to be for my little ones. My girls saw how important it was to them to give back and to do their part. What an amazing lesson they got to take away. They thought the world of each and every one of my players and I am forever grateful for the opportunities they had to laugh with them, be with them and most dear to my heart; to serve with them. It was one of those times when you just want to forever keep them in that moment. To remember how important it is to serve those less fortunate than yourselves and to do it together. Together may mean different things for different people. Maybe it is with your family, a team, a youth group, church or maybe just friends. Whoever that “together” is with–those moments matters.

Last year we were fortunate enough to not only bring the kiddos to ring the bell, but we made it possible for them to do it with their peers. We got to serve standing alongside their friends for the greater good. We did it two separate times because of the craziness of the season and what a gift that was. It was so stinking cold both times and our feet and hands were absolutely numb, but I will never forget the experience. I will never forget the smiles on the faces of the shoppers as they saw a group of children ringing the bell. I will never forget how much joy their voices brought to me as they sang Christmas carols to those who passed by. I will never forget the kind woman who not only donated money, but also went back inside the store and brought us all hot chocolate. What a blessing that was and something I know my kids will always remember. I will never forget the conversations that followed about how cold it would be if we were homeless, as we were only out there for 2 hours. I will never forget their smiles and the joy they brought with them. They wore their hearts on their sleeve and showed the world around them that this mattered to them. It was worth it, it was worth every second of ringing the bell and freezing our butts off.

Doing the Most Good is what the Salvation Army does for every man, woman and child they serve. They are also doing the most good in the hearts of the people who give their time to serve this cause.

If you are in the KC area, click here to sign up for your shift to ring the bell. If you are in other regions of the country, google search “Salvation Army and ringing the bell” to find a sign up in your area–there are many different regions across the US. Then send me your pictures so I can put them up on the KindCraft blog to show the world just how much all these little people care and want to give back!

-Stephanie