There are fewer Salvation Army Red Kettles collecting donations outside of San Antonio stores this holiday season.
That’s because not enough people are volunteering to ring the bells and man those donation stations, says Monica Ramos, Public Relations/Media Manager for the Salvation Army.
“We’re about $75,000 short of where we would be in a normal year,” said Ramos.
That’s about one-third fewer donations than in 2011, according to Ramos.
Those funds operate the Salvation Army’s emergency shelter, which is currently housing about 90 people. The majority of the occupants are children.
The money also funds food for the organization’s food pantry, which is handed out to families in need.
“If we don’t have that money, there's less food that we can buy… less food that we can give away," Ramos said.
It is a different story at SAMMinistries where donations for families transitioning out of homelessness have been strong during the 2012 holiday season.
"In the last few weeks, we've had well over 300 volunteers coming to help us, providing about 1200 hours to help sort through the toys that everyone has donated," said Navarra Williams, SAMMinistries President & CEO.
Gifts have been donated for 300 families. Toys make up the majority of donations, so Williams says they are still in need of gift cards for teens and adults.
SAMMinistries is helping 150 more children this year compared to 2011 and the community has largely answered the call.
However, both organizations could still use your help.
Contact the Salvation Army at 210-352-2000 or visit its location at 521 W. Elmira St. You can also log onto www.salvationarmysatx.org.
To contact SAMMinistries, visit www.samm.org or call 210-340-0302.
For a list of recent stories Myra Arthur has done, click here.