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Salvation Army Hawaii lands generous ‘crypto kettle’ donation

Published: Dec. 23, 2020 at 5:34 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - With fewer Salvation Army red kettles out in the community this year due to the pandemic, donations through the program are down 37% compared to last year.

But thanks to Wally Tsuha, a resounding jingle at Salvation Army headquarters Wednesday morning.

Tsuha donated two bitcoins to Salvation Army, which are worth about $50,000.

While the currency is digital, the non-profit is receiving real dollars.

Tsuha, a longtime business executive, made his fortune working in the automotive electronics industry and starting his own corporation.

“I was very fortunate, very lucky,” Tsuha said.

“We grew the company from 1985 to 2012 and we got up to sales of over $400 million in revenue a year with plants in the U.S., Philippines, Mexico, and even in China.”

But before that successful career, Tsuha experienced a much different childhood, growing up with seven siblings in Kalihi.

“I remember growing up when the Salvation Army brought the baskets of food and some clothing and some toys,” Tsuha said. “I just really believe now is the time to give back.”

The Salvation Army has been in Hawaii for more than 125 years and Tsuha’s donation is a significant milestone that brings the organization into the digital age.

“This is a very meaningful moment not just for the Salvation Army, but I think for the nonprofit world because I think that there’s a community of people out there who have cryptocurrency and they want to make a difference,” said Salvation Army Capt. Jeff Walters.

“We’ve just opened up a channel for them to do that.”

Tsuha is urging others to join him and open their digital wallets as well.

“It is a great cause and they need the money this year,” Tsuha said.

“Revenues are down, but the need has grown tremendously. Everyone knows that we got COVID-19 and I think everyone knows also that the Salvation Army does not turn anyone away.”

Donations can be made at cryptokettle.org and the Salvation Army is also accepting funds through Apple Pay and Google Pay.

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