BART and The Salvation Army launch "Partners for Change" campaign to help homeless


BART and The Salvation Army launch "Partners for Change" campaign to help homeless

BART is teaming up with The Salvation Army during its seasonal Red Kettle Campaign with a new “Partners for Change” initiative inside BART stations systemwide.  The first of its kind partnership will provide donated funds and paper BART tickets from BART riders to help pay for supportive services for those who seek shelter inside BART stations and on-board trains. The partnership start date of December 3 coincides with the Army’s kettle campaign timeframe, which runs from November 22 through December 24.

“Our riders have expressed concerns and a willingness to help those experiencing homelessness in our stations and this partnership brings the community together to connect people to beds, supportive services and treatment centers. The Salvation Army is uniquely qualified to help the homeless in the Greater Bay Area and we are glad to be working with them together to continue to address this crisis,” said BART Board President Bevan Dufty. “Our various fare machines are also notorious for giving change in all coins. The Salvation Army’s iconic Red Kettle is a perfect place to off load a pocket full of change and unused paper tickets.”

“Homelessness has become a humanitarian crisis, and nowhere else is the situation as poignant as it is in San Francisco, “said Major Darren Norton, Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army’s Golden State Division, based in San Francisco. “We offer a breadth of services to the homeless in our community, but we also know that working together is how we will really make a difference and change people’s lives. This partnership with BART will allow us to collaborate with our community and make a profound change.”

“The Salvation Army is thankful to have a partner in BART to help address this issue of homelessness,” said Major Ivan Wild, Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army's Del Oro Division, based in the East Bay.. “BART sees and supports our efforts to meet human needs without discrimination. We hope riders will do the same and dig deep into their hearts and their pockets to make a positive change across the bay area. Only together can we do the most good.”

How it Works

The Salvation Army will position their iconic Red Kettles in the free area of BART stations during the holiday season and collect donations from BART riders. BART will post signs inside stations near the vending machines that give change to encourage riders to donate to help the unhoused who seek shelter at BART. Riders can also donate their paper BART tickets with remaining fare, which will be refunded for cash value.  BART has been phasing out paper tickets in favor of Clipper cards. 

All donated funds will be used locally. For example, donations collected in San Francisco will go towards services and resources in San Francisco, while donations collected in the East Bay will stay in the East Bay.

The Salvation Army will then work together with BART’s Crisis Intervention Coordinator and homeless outreach teams on distribution of funds for supportive housing, substance abuse treatment, case management, blankets, socks, care packages and other services for unhoused individuals spending their time at BART. 

To donate online, The Salvation Army has set up  Donations will be tracked to determine how much money is raised in the BART system and at each station. BART and The Salvation Army are seeking corporate matches as part of the campaign.

About The Salvation Army:

Since 1883, The Salvation Army has been transforming lives throughout the Greater Bay Area.   The Red Kettle Campaign started in San Francisco in 1891 and is in its 129th year and is the largest and longest-running fundraiser of its kind. It raised $142.7 million nationwide during the 2018 campaign.  The Salvation Army annually helps more than 23 million Americans overcome poverty, addiction and economic hardships through a range of social services. Locally, they serve more than 500,000 people annually in the Greater Bay Area. offering practical support, spiritual comfort and a critical safety net to people in need. The Salvation Army provides services to the homeless without discrimination regardless of ethnic or national origin, race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation or immigration status.

For every dollar donated to The Salvation Army, 82 cents is used to support those services in facilities throughout the Bay Area. For more information go to or

Partners for Change