Salvation Army’s Red Kettle program falls tens of thousands of dollars short of goal

VIDEO: Salvation Army falls $45K short of donation goal

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Salvation Army in Charleston say they need your help after their holiday Red Kettle program came up tens of thousands of dollars short of their goal.

The Red Kettle effort, or bell ringing, helps to fund a good portion of the Salvation Army's social services like utility and rent assistance, clothing vouchers and food boxes. It also helps to fund our Boys and Girls Club at the community center in West Ashley.

The goal this year was to raise $250,000. But when the organization brought in all the kettles in on Christmas Eve, they were roughly $45,000 shy of that goal.

“When we have a shortfall in our fundraising programs, we have to figure out where we need to cut expenses,” Charleston Corps Officer Capt. Jason Burns said. “We look at our programs, we look at our scope of services and see if we can pull back a little bit but still try to maximize the services that we’re able to help in our communities.”

Burns said because of the shortfall, they will not be able to help with assistance as much as they would like to.

“We know that for every dollar that we’re short, that’s someone we won’t be able to help in the future,” Burns said. "That’s a family that we’re not able to help with food or clothing. It’s lights that we’re not able to keep on for families. It’s rent that we’re not able to help to keep a family in their home. People come to us in crisis. And they are hoping and expecting help. If we’re not able to financially give that help, it’s very discouraging because we have lots of families that come through and lots of situations that we see, not just through Christmas but all of the year.

Burns added employment is very strong in our area so it was difficult for the organization to find bell ringers to go out and work.

The total this year was also about $50,000 short of what they were able to raise last year.

Burns said they are very grateful, though, to those who were able to give.

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