Krugerrand coin found in red kettle by Salvation ArmyAs volunteer Robin Jones counted money from a red kettle Thursday evening in Mitchell, she noticed a $1 bill that was oddly heavy.
By: Anna Jauhola, The Daily Republic
As volunteer Robin Jones counted money from a red kettle Thursday evening in Mitchell, she noticed a $1 bill that was oddly heavy.
On the back side, she found a gold Krugerrand coin taped in the center.
The anonymous boost was a welcome one for Mitchell’s Salvation Army Red Kettle campaign, said Maj. Linda Jones.
“This will really help out,” she said.
Kettle donations are down $6,000 from this time last year and mail-in donations are down $7,000. At this time in 2010, the charity had collected a total of $66,483.47.
A Krugerrand is a 1-ounce gold coin from South Africa and is worth between $1,700 and $1,800. Daily Republic archives indicate a coin has been donated each year as far back as 2003.
One person already has placed a bid on the coin, and bids are being accepted from the public.
When Jones bid out the coin last year, a person purchased it for $1,400 and gave an extra $400.
“They were going to give to the Salvation Army anyway,” Jones said.
The value of the coin has tripled in the last six years — Jones said the coin given in 2006 sold for $600.
Although she won’t release the names of the people who buy the coins, she announces when the coins are sold and for how much. The bidding will remain open through Christmas Eve. To bid on the coin, call 996-3964.
So far in 2011, the charity has been helping between 600 and 900 people each month. That’s triple the amount of people served six years ago, Maj. Jones said.
Salvation Army volunteers will ring bells through Dec. 24 at various locations, and donations will be accepted for the campaign through Dec. 31.
The charity’s Red Kettle Campaign goal this year is $112,500.
“I know this year has been hard on the families here in Mitchell,” Maj. Jones said. “I’m still hopeful that we can make our kettle goal. Mitchell is a very giving community.”