The Salvation Army said Saturday that it was within $25,000 of its $550,000 goal for its 2011 Red Kettle campaign.
Capt. Steven Lopes, pastor and northwest Ohio services coordinator for the agency, said 50 volunteers were out for most of Christmas Eve day and the organization was upbeat that the $25,000 could be collected. "We are hopeful and have our fingers crossed, and we are praying," he said. "All reports are that people are being very generous."
Christmas Eve usually is the best day of the year for the campaign. Bell-ringers were stationed throughout Toledo, Bowling Green, Napoleon, and Port Clinton. Captain Lopes said the final amount wouldn't be known for several days. The campaign supports programs that help those in need with things such as rent, food, utilities, and substance-abuse treatment. In 2010, the Salvation Army collected $535,428 after setting a goal of $520,000.