With just over a week until Christmas, the Salvation Army reports they still have a long way to go to reach their fundraising goals for the 2016 holiday season.
Leaders with the Salvation Army Cascade Division said Friday that its Red Kettle donations are down dramatically because of recent bad weather, which has closed some locations for kettles and shortened collection hours at others.
With only a week left of the bell-ringing efforts, Captain Robert Steiner, Divisional Secretary for The Salvation Army Cascade Division, said the group is concerned they will see the effects far into the next year, and this campaign raises half of their funds for the year.
"We help over 80,000 people every year, and we are able to do this because of the donations we receive at Christmas time and at the kettles," he said. "We are worried that we won't reach our goal because of what it means for the people and families that we serve throughout the year.”
Currently, the Red kettle campaign has raised $389,000, the Salvation Army officials said the goal this year was $750,000.
The funds raised during this and other Salvation Army campaigns go to fund programs including homeless outreach and food and toy collections for low-income families during the holidays. During the holiday season, the Cascade Division will help 3,000 families in the Portland metro.
“Donations keep our programs and services operating a high level,” Steiner said. “With more funds, we could help more people in more ways, but with fewer donations, we are going to have to re-evaluate what we can provide low-income and at risk people and families."
To make a donation to the campaign, the Salvation Army asks people to stop by their neighborhood Red Kettle location or donate online at Portland.SalvationArmy.org.
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