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Salvation Army programs could be in jeopardy due to lack of donations

By: Brittany Pelletz Email
By: Brittany Pelletz Email

Salvation Army staff say that the kettle campaign is the largest fundraiser of the year. The donations raised through the holiday season help fund the various programs throughout the year.

"Where would you be without the Salvation Army?" we asked Reba Kelley a mother to two young children.

"I'd be on the streets," Kelley responded.

While Kelley is about to be moving out and on her own, she says she couldn't have done it without the Salvation Army's help, "Within the three months that I've been here, I've been able to get my GED, and I'm going to start college at BCTC. I would've been able to do that without the staff here to help me with my children."

Kelley is not alone. Last year, the Salvation Army helped more than 149,000 women and children in Lexington through the emergency shelter program. This program and many others at the Salvation Army could be in jeopardy since donations are down 20 percent within the Kettle Campaign.

"We believe, it is due to the low economy. And the hard times the people are having right now," says Major Steven Ashcraft, with the Salvation Army.

Last year, more than $348,000 was raised. In this year that number only amounts to more than $278,000.

"Unfortunately we only have six days to go, and we need to raise about $170,000," adds Ashcraft.

Despite donations being down for the first time this year, the Salvation Army is still hopeful of a Christmas miracle, "The community has always been generous and we believe the generosity from the community will come through again this year. Lexington has a big heart for those that are in need," Ashcraft says.

It's not too late to make a donation. Volunteers will be out with the red kettles until Christmas.

With this being the first year that kettle campaign donations are down, it is also the first year that Salvation Army staff are having to look at where cuts can be made if the funds don't come in.

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