In the home stretch, Salvation Army still $25,000 under its $330,000 fundraising goal
With just less than two weeks left in its Red Kettle fundraiser, the Salvation Army of Washtenaw County is still $25,000 under its goal of $330,000.
The Red Kettle campaign is the Salvation Army's biggest fundraiser. This year's goal is $30,000 higher than last year's, which Major John Williams, the group's county coordinator, said was based on a commensurate increase in need, especially among younger people.
AnnArbor.com file photo
"The demand for our services from the younger age group is not only growing, but it’s requiring more dollars to cover basic needs," Williams said. "We wanted to increase the goal because we saw the increase in demand for services We wanted to do a little bit more for the community as far as helping families deeper with their requests for help."
The 42-day fundraiser lasts until Jan. 31 and has made strides since the Salvation Army's December update, when it had $40,000 to go.
"We made some ground up but we didn’t make it all up," Williams said.
Williams said there wasn't a "simple answer" as to why the Salvation Army has had difficulty reaching its fundraising goal. However, he said there were eight fewer fundraising locations this year. Furthermore, the group's access to its remaining sites was intermittently interrupted by the fundraising efforts of other organizations.
"We probably lost about a week’s worth of time," he said.
In addition to these factors, Williams said he's observed fewer people have been making large donations.
"We saw an increase in smaller donations of a dollar or two given at the kettle sites," he said. "We didn’t see the larger donations at the kettle sites that we used to see."
Despite the setbacks, Williams said the group remains optimistic.
"Our expectation is that we will be able to meet the goal," he said. "We have actually every year met the goal, so I don’t have any reason to believe we won’t."
Anyone interested in donating to the Salvation Army of Washtenaw County can find more information on the group's Web site. Williams said the group accepts donations online, over the phone, or by mail.