EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)– As we celebrate Cinco De Mayo, another event has come on the calendar. Giving Tuesday. It’s a chance for people to help others during these unprecedented times of hardship and need among the COVID-19 pandemic. With so many things changing on what feels like a daily basis, one thing holds true. People need help and they depend on places like the salvation army. To stock these shelves they need help from people who are willing to give.
“As the Salvation Army helped the community back 101 years ago. We’re still helping today,” Mark Turner says.
A photo of his great aunt reminds Mark Turner with the Salvation Army of Evansville the difference they’re making.
“Our services to the community have increased dramatically. A year ago, in April, we served approximately 600 families. This year we have done over 900 families through our food pantry.”
Other charities in evansville are feeling the impact of the covid 19 pandemic in different ways.
“We have had to suspend some of our programs just simply because of the fear of the pandemic spreading,” Cinda Phillips explains.
“We were scheduled to have our big fundraiser dinner this thursday night. It’s a pretty big event for us where we raise several thousand dollars and we had to cancel that because of COVID,” Erika Taylor says.
Now charities like The Arc of Evansville are feeling the impact in their wallets.
“We have had a little bit of a budget crunch because of this,” Phillips continues.
And while some non-profits are cutting back, the Salvation Army is stepping up.
“In the last two weeks alone we’ve helped over 30 families. That’s over $25,000 in direct assistance to help people stay in their homes, keep the utilities on,” Turner explains.
But the lack of programming and fundraisers, and with more people needing financial help, groups like the Salvation Army, the YWCA, and The Arc of Evansville are now the ones asking for help. They’ve each set up links on their websites for people to donate to.
The YWCA is using this “Giving Tuesday” to help balance its budget since some of its other fundraisers might also get canceled. But it’s a need in many charities.
“There are so many great nonprofits in the Evansville community. Even if you don’t feel compelled to give to the YWCA if you can give your dollars to any of us here in the nonprofit community it’s just such a great thing to do today,” Taylor says.
Turner says it’s important for people to remember… “you may be down but you’re never out.”
(This story was originally published on May 5, 2020)