SHEBOYGAN — While The Salvation Army’s iconic Red Kettles remain at the entrances of area stores, shoppers may have noticed things were uncharacteristically quiet last week.
Due to the extreme weather, many Red Kettle sites were without volunteers and the seasonal sound of their ringing bells. This has officials for the area Salvation Army concerned.
The Salvation Army hopes to raise $525,000 this year. However as of Saturday evening, they are approximately $250,000 short of the goal.
“The holiday season is our most crucial period of fundraising, with approximately 25% of our income for the year raised in November and December,” said Abby Block, Development Director. “With only six days of bell ringing remaining and just two weeks left until the end of the Christmas campaign, meeting our goal will be a challenge,” Block stated. “But, we also know how generous the people of the Sheboygan area are. We believe it’s definitely still possible to meet it.”
This year’s Christmas campaign has encountered its share of obstacles, the weather among them. According to Volunteer Coordinator Carrye Jo Cony, the brutal temperatures and snow have caused The Salvation Army to fall behind. “The weather certainly isn’t helping matters,” said Cony. “We can’t risk having our bell ringers out in such severe cold.”
In addition to its Red Kettles, The Sheboygan Salvation Army relies on donations from area individuals, businesses and foundations to meet its Christmas fundraising goal. “In order to care for the most vulnerable among us, we truly depend on the generosity of our neighbors here in Sheboygan,” added Lt. Daryl Mangeri, Corps Officer and Pastor. “We are grateful for each and every gift, whether that be loose change in one of our Kettles or a significant contribution from an area company.”