Salvation Army Programs Could Be Impacted By Drop In Donations

With the new year only days away, charities are checking to see if they met their goals for 2013. While all are counting their blessings, some fell a bit short.

Children have a positive environment at the Salvation Army's Kroc Center in Omaha, where they can play soccer among other activities. The Salvation Army is worried programs like these might face cuts after it failed to reach its goal.

"At the end of the month, the well is going to dry up for our material assistance,” says Salvation Army Lt. John Fetzer. “It's going to affect all of our programs, even our kids' programs, and shelters.”

When bell ringers hit the streets this holiday season, they tried to raise $3 million for the charity's yearly budget. The campaign ended and funds 20 programs depend on came up about 30 percent short.

The charity will have to make some tough decisions as to how each program will be affected, but it plans to do the best with what it has. "We're still the Salvation Army and we'll still serve the community as much as we can."

At Goodwill, it's a different story. People are rushing in to make last-minute donations. The charity is seeing nearly four times more donations than usual.

Lindsay Warren finds it's the best way to dispose of unwanted items. “Dropping some stuff off, cleaning the house, got a lot of stuff for Christmas so trying to get rid of stuff as we bring more in."

For most donors, dropping off unwanted items before the year ends is a great opportunity for tax deductions and the more items Goodwill gets to sell in its stores, the more it gets to help people. “We sell it in our stores and the proceeds go to our programs for people with disabilities and disadvantages,” says Godwill’s Kris Pachunka. “In 2012, we helped over 2,000 people find jobs."

If you want to get in on a tax deduction by donating items to Goodwill, their stores will be open until 5 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. The Salvation Army says even though the campaign is over, you can still make a tax deductible donation.

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