The Salvation Army has reported that donations to red kettles in Lake County, Indiana, are down by 30 percent so far, compared to this time last year, while the need and requests for food and assistance are greater than ever.

The iconic red kettles have been on streets and shopping centers since November 8, with the goal of raising $940,000 here locally to fund the emergency and social services provided by the Army during the holiday season and throughout the year. So far, generous Lake County residents have given $410,000 to the local Red Kettle campaign. Of that total, more than $312,000 has been donated to the physical red kettles. The remainder has been donated through the mail and online. 

Each holiday season, The Salvation Army in Lake County serves more than 11,000 people, provides more than 2,500 food baskets, 8,000 toys and more than 4,000 articles of clothing.

With Thanksgiving falling later in the month, leaving one less week between Thanksgiving and Christmas, The Salvation Army is asking the generous Lake County communities to help it make up for lost time over the next week to prevent the charity from having to make any cuts the critical social services it provides to area people in need in the year ahead.

“We are have seen a significant increase this year in the number of people turning to The Salvation Army for assistance, particularly as a result of families struggling with decreases in federal assistance benefits for food,” said Captain Rebecca Simmons, Salvation Army Lake County Coordinator. “All across the community, we see evidence of our neighbors in need. While the economy is slowly showing signs of improvement, that recovery has yet to trickle down to low-income families who are suffering the most.”

“I’m so proud of the generosity of Lake County residents toward the red kettles every year,” said Tom DeGiulio, Salvation Army Advisory Board Chair and Munster Town Manager. “We had anticipated that this would be a difficult year because of the shorter holiday season, but I know that we’re a community of people who care deeply about their neighbors in need, so I ask my fellow Lake County residents to join forces with me and give whatever you can to the red kettles.”

Red kettles will be on the streets through December 24 with a few remaining until January 4. The iconic red kettles and its bell ringers are the heart and soul of the Christmas season and are an integral part of The Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign. The Salvation Army receives nearly 70 percent of its yearly donations during the campaign. The funds are used not only to support Christmas programs and services, but to help The Salvation Army serve neighbors in need throughout the entire year. Funds raised will stay in the Lake County community.

To make a donation by mail, please send to:

The Salvation Army Lake County, 8225 Columbia Ave, Munster, IN 46321

call 219-838-1328

or visit

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