STEUBENVILLE - The city Salvation Army has fallen short of its annual fundraising goal by $10,000 and is asking the community for its assistance in overcoming that shortfall.
According to Maj. Earline May, the Salvation Army will have to cut services for local assistance if the goal isn't met by Monday.
"My greatest concern is we are $10,000 behind in our (fundraising goal)," she said, adding the funds are needed for Salvation Army operations. "(The funds needed) usually go toward needs at Christmas and also carries us through the first of the year for the food pantry and the other services we provide."
May thanked those business, organizations, individuals and churches that had sponsored the Salvation Army so far this year, including kettle drive hosts Wal-Mart, Kmart, Riesbeck's, the Steubenville Kroger and the Wintersville Big Lots. She also thanked angel tree sponsors, which included the Dollar General stores in Steubenville, Mingo Junction and Wintersville; the Zion United Church of Christ; Huntington Bank; Bob Evans; Applebees; the Eastern Gateway Community College student senate; Cash Advance; First National Bank; the Social Security department; and the Jefferson County Sheriff's Department. She also thanked all Salvation Army volunteers, including the its League of Mercy volunteers, who visit local nursing homes.
"Thank you to all the bell ringers, businesses and groups who partnered with the Salvation Army this year to meet the need," said May. "This is the first time in 11 years we've had a shortfall."
May said she hopes individuals will come forward with donations, and she's asked local businesses to host office challenges to help raise funds.
"All donations will be accepted through Dec. 31," she said, adding as long as a check is dated Dec. 31, or earlier, donated funds would be used for operations through the end of the year.
May said she is puzzled by the shortfall, since in 2011 the Salvation Army exceeded its goal.
"If people want to donate they can use it as an end-of-the-year tax (exemption)," May added.
Checks should be dated by Monday and made payable to the Salvation Army at P.O. Box 1266, Steubenville, OH 43952.
The Salvation Army, 332 N. Fourth St., can be reached at (740) 282-5121.