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Donating to charity can be as easy as buying a Snickers at LDS Church’s Giving Machines

The red kiosks are back after being shelved last year due to COVID-19.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Evelyn Ibarra and her husband, Aaron, make their selection of items to donate in a Giving Machine as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announces the return of the charity machines installed in the plaza at City Creek Center on Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

They’re like the Redbox of charity — and they’re back.

After being pulled last year due to COVID-19, the Yuletide Giving Machines — large crimson vending kiosks from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that allow people to buy and donate food, water, medial services, school supplies, even chickens, goats and pigs — are being placed in two Utah cities and eight others across the nation.

The one at Orem’s University Place opened Tuesday, and the one in downtown Salt Lake City’s City Creek Center opened Wednesday.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) As part of the annual Light the World initiative, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints returned the charity Giving Machines in the plaza at City Creek Center in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

The machines also will be located in Las Vegas; Nashville, Tenn; Honolulu; Oakland, Calif.; Gilbert, Ariz.; Denver; Kansas City, Mo.; and New York, according to a news release from the Utah-based faith.

With the simple swipe of a credit card, the machines make contributing to local and global charities as easy as buying a Kit Kat or a Coke. In the 2019 holiday season, they racked up nearly $6.3 million worth of donations.

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) Charitable options are available as part of the annual Light the World initiative, with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints returning the charity Giving Machines in the plaza at City Creek Center in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021.

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