Grand Island Red Kettle Campaign Donations Down

By: Morgan Demmel Email
By: Morgan Demmel Email

If you aren't carrying cash when you pass the kettles, click HERE to donate to the Grand Island Salvation Army with a credit card.

You can also drop off check donations at the Salvation Army building at 818 W. 3rd Street.

The Grand Island Salvation Army is still looking for volunteer bell ringers. Click HERE to learn about donating your time.

Christmas is less than two weeks away, but the Grand Island Salvation Army's red kettle campaign isn't gaining the speed Salvation Army officials had hoped for.

Victor Watson has been ringing his bell at the North Skagway and Hy-Vee for the past three weeks, but even with his cheery greetings, this year's donations in Grand Island have fallen short.

"We're about $10,000 behind last year at this time and about $15,000 behind where we needed to be this time of year," Salvation Army Captain Dave Mowers says.

Mowers says that's a big problem because of the growing need in the community.

"We've seen the numbers requesting our services jump significantly over the last three years and it's continuing to grow, even as things are easing up a bit in the economy, we still see the need hitting families," Mowers says.

He's says he's not sure what's causing the lower donations.

"We've had some weather that affects the kettles themselves but even the mail donations are down a little bit," Mowers says.

He says if needed donations don't come in, some Grand Island families may not get the help they need.

"It's very important for us to be able to meet those goals," Mowers says. "It really affects all the programs that we have when we're not able to make those."

He's hoping they'll be able to overcome the setback over the next two weeks leading up to Christmas. Watson says he's already seen an increase in the number of people hitting the grocery stores this week.

"Especially getting closer to Christmas, it gets a lot busier," Watson says.

And he says if each of those people just makes a quick stop at the kettle, the gap in giving could disappear.

"If somebody's walking by, and has an extra dollar or two or a handful of change, it can make a difference," Mowers says.

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