LUBBOCK, TX -- A ringing bell, known for encouraging people to reach in their pockets and drop money into the Salvation Army's famous red kettles, has been no match for the recent wintry weather.
The Salvation Army is struggling to reach their $225,000 goal this holiday and they fear that void will affect the 8,500 people they serve on the South Plains.
As of Monday, December 9, the Salvation Army hoped to raise $80,000, but so far only $40,000 has come in through their holiday collection.
"At our kettles, they're not slowing down," said Major Tim Grider, Salvation Army Corps Officer. "Even right now, as we speak, you see folks passing right by, and it's just too cold!"
On top of this weekend's winter weather, Grider said the storm at the end of November also affected them keeping their bell ringers home for a few days.
The weather, though, was not the only thing that put the Salvation Army behind. This year Thanksgiving fell six days later in the month than usual and since stores wouldn't let the bell ringers start until after Thanksgiving, Grider said they lost valuable time to collect donations.
"The whole year's budget is being raised at this time of the year," said Grider. "We're almost at the point of not being to overcome it, which means that after Christmas we're going to have to make some decisions that we don't want to make."
Grider said those decisions include cutting back or even cutting out some of their programs that feed, house, and cloth the 8,500 people in need on the South Plains.
"There's no replacing the kettle and what it does for us financially," said Grider. "It is what it is, and we need it to be that, too. Christmas Eve is our last day and we have a lot to overcome."
You can drop off donations at Salvation Army kettles around town or donate online here.