Time running out for local charities to meet their holiday goals
BARRIE -- With just days to go until Christmas, several local charities say they're way behind where they need to be at this point in their campaigns, to help those in need in the community this holiday season.
At the Barrie & District Christmas Cheer, there was a sense of anxiousness on Monday as volunteers rummaged through the warehouse for toys to be handed out.
"The number of toys we have is actually less than it usually is," says the charity's former president Ian Hocking, "We haven't packed an awful lot yet, and these tables are not exactly overflowing."
There are only three days left, and monetary donations are down as well, with the demand up about 10 per cent from last year. This year's goal is $250,000, and they're not even halfway there.
"We're actually missing about a hundred and fifty thousand dollars give or take a bit, and we're giving everything away on Thursday, so we need a little bit of help."
Most of the charities will be wrapping up their holiday campaigns over the next week and still have a long way to go, with most only halfway to their goals.
At the Barrie Food Bank, donations are still pouring in. So far, they've collected about 100,000 pounds of food, but the charity's executive director, Peter Sundborg, says they need to double that number by December 23.
"Our goal is not only based on December but really takes us well into March and April of 2020," says Sundborg, "this food is really what helps us to do that."
Meanwhile, The Salvation Army's Christmas Kettle Campaign is currently $279,000 short of it's goal, and Youth Haven still needs about $5,000 to fill its boxes of hope, helping young people currently experiencing homelessness across Simcoe County.
"It's critical," says Youth Haven executive director Lucy Gowers, "these kids have nowhere to go on Christmas, so it really does mean the world."
But despite the shortfalls, the charity remains optimistic.
"Everybody will get something; it just may not be as much as it was."