NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Many parents want to encourage their kids to look up from their smart phones and get involved in volunteer activities, and now many charities are taking to social media to help.

Jerome Greena and Heather Green of the Salvation Army of New Jersey spoke with CBS2’s Cindy Hsu and Andrea Grymes about ideas and options available.

“We have many different platforms that we use – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram,” said Jerome Green. “We also have some peer-to-peer networking called #RedKettleReason where people can actually raise funds online with their friends.”

Salvation Army organizers also encourage youth to share the programs with their friends.

“These kids are influencers, If they’re putting out positive messages, not just negative ones, they can really make a difference.”

The program is paying dividends to the charity group.

Jersey City youth raised $10,000 for emergency disaster services, while another youth volunteered for years to collect thousands of books used in an after-school program.

Beyond bell ringing during the holidays, the Salvation Army also has licensed after-school programs, daycare centers, literacy programs, English As Second Language education and summer day camps including use of 400 acres lakeside in Hunterdon County, New Jersey.

For opportunities in New York, see the local website or @SalvationArmyNY on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

In New Jersey, see their website or @SalvationArmyNJ on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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