Friday morning, waiting to pick up his care package and food, Herbert Williams explained why he and more than 900 others turned to the Salvation Army for support at Christmas.
“It’s hard out here, so we try to get all the help we can get,” he told an Elkhart Truth reporter.
We still have three days until Christmas. We can still make sure that those who need help can find it — now and throughout the year.
The Salvation Army in Elkhart buys its Christmas care packages with money it raises from bell ringing. But this year, even though requests for help increased by more than 100, giving is down. The same is true in Goshen, where the Salvation Army hoped to raise $75,000. Through Dec. 18, a week before Christmas, it failed to reach half of that.
Other organizations also request help to serve those in need:
The Boys and Girls Club of Elkhart County assembled a wish list that includes everything from jump ropes to books and board games. Loveway, a nonprofit agency that provides therapeutic horseback riding for those with special needs, asked for children’s gloves, equine grooming products and brooms. Its complete wish list is posted on elkharttruth.com.
Church Community Services assists people throughout the year, providing food for nearly 2,400 households in November alone. To help those in need at Christmas, CCS requests donations of nonperishable foods, personal care items and diapers. But in order to sustain its mission, the faith-based agency also needs a laptop computer, food bank volunteers and skilled construction help.
The Family Christian Development Center in Nappanee needs money to help people pay rent and utilities. Faith Mission of Elkhart, where an average of 140 people sleep each night during the winter, needs pillows, blankets and towels. The list goes on and on.
It’s hard out there. People continue to struggle physically, emotionally, financially.
Now is the time to help.
Elkhart Salvation Army: saelkhart.org, 970-0088.
Goshen Salvation Army: sagoshen.org, 533-2636.
Boys and Girls Club of Elkhart County: bgcelkhartcounty.org, 534-5933.
Church Community Services: churchcommunityservices.org, 295-3673.
Nappanee Family Christian Development Center: fcdcin.org, 773-2149.
Faith Mission: thefaithmission.org, 293-3406.