The Salvation Army on Thursday announced it has fallen behind on its holiday fundraising goal for the 2012 Christmas season.
The McHenry County Salvation Army is fighting an uphill battle with the economy, according to Major Garry Lowder, the local commanding officer.
"The economy is making this a very challening fundraising campaign," Lowder said. "Many people who gave to us as recent as last year are finding themselves in need of our services this year."
The annual Red Kettle Campaign currently is about $25,000 below 2011, and donations of toys, food and gift cards for the Toyland Toyshop also are lower than last year, at this point in time, he said.
"We believe the reason we are lagging behind is the challenging economy," Lowder said.
The McHenry County Salvation Army continues to see an increase in the number of people applying for Christmas assistance for the very first time with the non-profit agency.
Lowder said this number is actually low when compared with the increase in individuals seeking assistance through the Salvation Army's Emergency Assistance programs.
"The numbers of people seeking our help with utility bill cut-offs and eviction notices for financial assistance continues to grow at an alarming rate," Lowder said.
There are many ways the McHenry County public can help, and get involved with the Salvation Army's fundraising efforts:
- Adopt a red kettle
- Be a bell ringer
- Make an online donation
- Collect toys or sponsor a family
More ideas can be found on the Salvation Army website, or by calling 815-455-2769.
The Salvation Army receives about 80 percent of its public support from its annual Red Kettle Campaign and Christmas Appeal, officials said. All funds collected in McHenry County stay in the county.
Lowder wants to remind those residents who can afford to give to drop donations in the red kettles, or visit the Salvation Army office at 290 W. Crystal Lake Ave., Crystal Lake.
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