Late Thanksgiving diminishes jingle of Salvation Army kettles
A late Thanksgiving gobbled up some of the time donors have to contribute to The Salvation Army, putting this year's campaign behind target, organizers say.
“Definitely, it hurts us because Thanksgiving was so much later in the year,” said Fran Brace, director of development for The Salvation Army Western Pennsylvania Division. “We hope people give generously when they see our kettles out in the community, knowing we're going to be out shorter.”
Thanksgiving was six days later than last year and the latest it's been since 2002. The late start means fewer days to collect money. The division provides $7 million in aid across Western Pennsylvania to people who need food, clothing, shelter and utility assistance.
Brace said the division raised $885,852 at this time last year compared to $577,949 this year. That's a decrease of $307,903 or 35 percent. The target for this year's campaign is about $2.7 million for the 28 counties in Western Pennsylvania.
“We're hoping to make it up, but it will be difficult,” she said.
Brace said division officials are considering having a “Christmas in July” campaign to compensate, but no decision has been made.
“It's warmer for volunteers to be out,” she said.
The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank announced that it is extending its Fall FoodShare, traditionally its largest food and fundraising event of the season, to help families weather the tough winter months.
The event normally would end the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, or Nov. 27 this year, but it will run through this Thursday. The FoodShare, a collaboration with Giant Eagle, Citizens Bank and the Girl Scouts, allows shoppers to donate food at the grocery store or make a donation of $1, $2 or $5 to the food bank with their purchase at the cash register.
The drive raised a record $206,770 in cash donations, as of Friday, compared to a then-record $157,000 all of last fall, said Lisa Scales, CEO of the food bank.
“I attribute the increase to the fact that the community understands the serious problem of hunger and is willing to step up and make a donation,” she said.
Scales said the food bank needed to extend the campaign because of the community need. A year ago in November, the food bank served 640 families in two hours at its center on the South Side, compared to 904 on a similar day last month; 606 families in Homewood last year, compared to 821 last month; and 647 families in Duquesne in November 2012, compared to 857 families last month.
Scales said more families need help because on Nov. 1 a reduction in the federal food stamps program lowered the money available for residents in the region to buy food by $3 million a month.
Bill Zlatos is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7828 email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Western Pa. experts say nonprofit mergers take work
- Burgess’ rivals for Pittsburgh council nomination owe money to government
- Upper St. Clair lawyer pleads guilty to dealing in crack
- Pro-union hourly workers picket Rivers Casino
- Ice cream safe to eat, federal officials insist amid listeria bacteria discoveries
- Newsmaker: Dr. Clifton W. Callaway
- Hearing set for Homewood man accused of killing Lawrenceville resident
- Wilmerding resident to stand trial for fatal shooting
- Trib recognition program celebrates young leaders in south, west area
- House floating along rivers will be new South Side Marina office
- North Allegheny OKs $20.5 million in contracts for renovations