Jefferson City Red Kettle Campaign fails to hit goal this year
COLUMBIA — The Salvation Army in Jefferson City wrapped up its 2016 Red Kettle Campaign on Christmas Eve this year. However, bad weather made raising money difficult.
Right now, the group is $33,000 short from meeting its end goal of $270,000.
Salvation Army Corps Lt. Christopher White said there was “significantly bad weather, especially on critical days.”
“The weekend that we had that freezing rain, that Saturday, last year was one of our biggest days because last year it was the Saturday before Christmas,” White said. “This year, Christmas Eve was a Saturday, so we expected many shoppers to come out, but there were some shoppers that braved the freezing rain. We had $3,000 come in on that day, which was wonderful, but it definitely was down from last year.”
Another challenge was the organization started some of its sites later than last year, White said.
“We weren’t able to start ringing at those sites until later, which meant the money that we’d raise at those sites in the first couple of weeks last year, we weren’t able to have this year,” White said.
The last time the group counted, which was on Dec. 22, the campaign raised $227,000. White said at this point last year, the campaign raised $252,000.
White said he enjoys meeting the people who donate and hearing their stories about how the Salvation Army has helped them.
“When I get to meet those people, when I get to hear some of those stories, my heart is just touched to know that the Salvation Army is much bigger than me, it’s much bigger than Jefferson City,” White said. “It’s helped people throughout generations and throughout the world as well, so that’s really cool. Their donations and their stories remind me why I do what I do.”
The money the group raises helps fund the services it provides and programs like its 40 bed shelter in Jefferson City. All of the money raised goes back into the services they provide in the city, White said.
The Salvation Army will continue to accept donations until the end of January. Donor’s can send donations via mail or send money though its website.