One charity in Florida might be feeling a bit of winter chill, as people in the Tampa Bay area are keeping wallets and purses closed at iconic Salvation Army Red Kettles this season.
As the holidays approach, Salvation Army donations are down by more than 12 percent across the Tampa Bay Area, according to Capt. Andrew Miller, Area Commander for The Salvation Army of Tampa and Hillsborough County.
“With less than three weeks left before Christmas, we’re hoping that shoppers will think of their neighbors in need the next time they pass a Salvation Army bellringer and give what they can,” Miller said.
Miller notes that a drop in donations means fewer meals for the hungry and beds for homeless in the Bay Area.
“This is the time of year when The Salvation Army raises most of its individual contributions,” he said. “So any drop in donations could negatively impact The Salvation Army’s ability to meet needs here in Tampa Bay.”
While time is running short, gifts can still be made to Red Kettles, which are stationed in front of Publix, J.C. Penney, and Wal-Mart stores and other local retailers throughout the Tampa Bay area.
Donations provide meals and shelter for families in need and Christmas toys for children, as well as many other services throughout the community. Salvation Army representatives say volunteers served more than 101,000 men, women, and children In Hillsborough and Pinellas counties last year alone.
The Salvation Army encourages will the public to donate this holiday season through either its Red Kettles or at www.SalvationArmyTampaBay.org.