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Salvation Army's Red Kettle campaign falling short of $500k goal in final week

The Hampton Roads Area Command really could use a hand. The Red Kettle campaign ends on Christmas Eve.

NORFOLK, Va. — There still is time to donate to The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle campaign, and the Hampton Roads Area Command could use your help.

Its goal was $500,000 dollars. With four days left to go, the Salvation Army had raised about half of that.

So what’s causing the drop in donations?

Area Commander of the Salvation Army of Hampton Roads, Maj. Donald Dohmann, acknowledged the pandemic could have played a role –  but said mainly, it’s a lack of volunteers to ring the bells.  

“I think that’s a big impact," Dohmann said. "We have a lot of locations that are allowing The Salvation Army to be out there. But there are days where we have no bell ringer to be out there."

Fewer donations mean less money to help people in need.  

"Our goal is $500,000 so right now we’re still a little ways from that," he said. "So far as of last Friday, we’ve raised $258,000. Compared to last year, we were at $274,000."

Dohmann said if The Salvation Army falls short of its budget goals, the command will have to rework how much money it spends on programs that help thousands of families every year.  

“Unfortunately, it’s those that we serve that are the ones that will be affected," he said. “Not just during Christmas but throughout the year. We have a women and children’s shelter, we have a men’s shelter. Here at our offices, here – we have a drive-through food pantry, Monday through Friday, every week. Then we have our rent and utility assistance programs.” 

Dohmann said The Salvation Army has raised about $13,000 online so far. That number also is down compared to this time last year.

These are the final days to donate. So if you hear the bell ringers, drop in some spare cash. 

“This is the last push," Dohmann said. 

You can also donate to the Red Kettle campaign online.