CALGARY -- The Royal Canadian Legion's 2020 Poppy Campaign kicked off Friday with adaptations that ensure Canadians can easily donate, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the campaign, Canadians are encouraged to wear a poppy to honour veterans who have fought and served in Canada's war efforts. The Poppy Campaign is the Legion's largest fundraising effort of the year, with all proceeds directly supporting Canadian veterans and their families.

"This year has been a challenge for all Canadians and especially for Canada’s veterans. Many of our veterans and their families face ongoing challenges transitioning to civilian life because of mental and physical injuries endured while in service," said John Mahon, president, AB-NWT Command of The Royal Canadian Legion.

There will be fewer poppy boxes placed throughout communities this year, but options to donate online and by text message are also available.

"They may feel uncomfortable handling cash or simply want to reduce their visits to locations where poppy boxes would normally be located. This year we are encouraging Albertans to make their donations online or throughout our text-to-donate options on their mobile phones," said Tammy Wheeler, executive director, AB-NWT Command of the Royal Canadian Legion.

Calgarians can text "POPPY4YYC" to 20222 to donate to the Calgary Branch's poppy fund. Other text-to-donate codes include POPPY4OK (Okotoks), POPPY4PC (Pincher Creek), and POPPY4TV (Turner Valley).

Information about online donations is available at the AB-NWT Command's poppy box website.