GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA) – The Salvation Army of Greenville said they need the community’s help. Leaders told 7NEWS they’re down $75,000 dollars in one of their big campaigns.

“Our goal is $250,000 from the kettle program, and this is our largest big push of fundraising that we do each year,” said Major Andrew Kelly, Area Commander with The Salvation Army Greenville, Pickens, and Oconee Counties. “Being $75,000 behind is a little worrisome for us.”

Kelly said it’s concerning because the funds help so many people in need.

“These monies are used to help with providing food for folks, providing shelter for folks. Sometimes helping with rent and utility,” Kelly said.

“We spent over $255,000 in rent and utility assistance and this money helps toward all of that,” Kelly said.

He also said it helps them stay afloat.

“The funds do help us to stay afloat, to help pay the bills, because we have to have employees on duty to provide the shelter, to provide the meals, and we need to pay the utilities for keeping the shelter open, and so, some of these funds go towards that as well,” Kelly said.

This all comes at a time The Salvation Army of Greenville is seeing more people in need.

“We did have some difficulties during the pandemic last year and the year before, but this year seems to be even further behind that. We’re thinking that part of it has to have something to do with the way the economy is right now. People are afraid to give any of their extra monies, because they’re not certain how far their dollars are going to go,” Kelly said.

“We’ve got a lot of people who are having to make this choice between paying a bill or having food on the table or you know,” Kelly said. “So, that makes it hard for people to give, but it’s also telling us that we can anticipate there will be more people coming to us for assistance.”

“Both of our shelters–our women and children shelter and our men’s shelter has been full and over capacity,” Kelly said. “We’ve added extra beds to the men’s shelter. And even with that, we’re turning dozens of people away every night from both shelters, and we hate to do that, but we can’t put them in a place where we don’t have a bed for them.”

They’ve even seen a great need this year during the holidays.

“We saw with our Angel Tree Program, that we did over 700 more angels than we did last year,” Kelly said. “So, that says to us, the need is definitely greater this year, and with the way the economy is going right now, it’s only getting worst.”

It’s the reason why one kettle bell ringer said she is trying to do her part.

“Being how cold it is right now, like if you were out on the street, like it would be pretty miserable,” the young woman said. “I’d hate to see that, and I’d hate to be that myself. So, just trying to help.”

Now, leaders are hopeful everyone else can help too.

“We know that there’s a lot of generous people in our community that could probably afford a little bit more of a gift this year than what they may have given already,” Kelly said. “I’m just asking for those very generous neighbors of ours, to please consider giving us a significant gift that will help us to have our shelters open.”

“Those who can afford a dollar, or five dollars, as they pass by the kettle, if everybody stopped, and even put a quarter in the kettle, what a tremendous difference that would make for us as we wrap up this kettle season this year,” Kelly said.

The Red Kettle Campaign ends on Saturday, but Kelly said that you can give beyond that time, to help with all of their needs.

“There’s many ways in which people can help us financially,” Kelly said. “We accept checks through the mail, of course giving in the kettles. There’s text to give on the phone, but at the kettles, there’s also a way to scan on the QR code and give that way or we have online options with our website.”

To see how you can help, visit The Salvation Army Greenville’s website.