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Some Bozeman nonprofits see decreased holiday donations amid rising need for services

Salvation Army, HRDC, and Reach share what their post-holiday donations look like
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Posted at 1:04 PM, Dec 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-29 15:34:32-05

As the holidays come to an end, I spoke with several Bozeman nonprofits about how their donations are looking coming into the new year.

“The end of the year is actually our biggest fundraising time because we do the red kettles. Those actually have ended for the year and our donations have actually, had been down by quite a bit,” says Captain Amber Ohl of the Salvation Army.

Ohl says the Salvation Army is struggling to keep up with their need for programs due to the lack of donations.

“Our need has increased by over 70% throughout all of our programs and because of that, we're obviously spending more money,” says Ohl.

Ohl says that the Salvation Army's fundraising goal was $66,000, but they missed that goal by $19,000. That makes them short of their goal by about 29%.

“One really cool thing is we actually have somebody right now who's willing to do a match for our virtual red kettles. And so they will match up to $10,000 of our virtual,” says Ohl.

I also reached out to HRDC to see how donations were coming, and Development Director Kristin Hamburg, says they are a little shorter than last year but are still thankful for all they have received.

“Investment in HRDC is really an investment in the community. The number of people that we serve is always on the increase,” says Hamburg.

Like the Salvation Army, HRDC says they have also seen an increase in need with full capacity in both their Bozeman and Livingston homeless shelters.

“We definitely have seen an increase in need. The number of people that are experiencing homelessness is higher than I honestly would have ever imagined,” says Hamburg.

HRDC is hopeful to reach its donation goal and help as many people as it can.

“We set a pretty ambitious goal this year to raise a million dollars and halfway through our fiscal year will be January one and we're almost to the halfway point,” says Hamburg.

Another nonprofit, Reach, serves adults with developmental disabilities and says donations are equivalent to last year. Executive Director Dee Metrick has also seen the increased need of services, but the holidays helped greatly.

“Because of the way fundraising happens for most nonprofits, and us included, you know, we've been kind of scrambling to cover costs until the holidays came,” says Metrick.

Metrick was also shocked to hear of the decrease in funds at the Salvation Army.

“It's unfortunate that the Salvation Army is struggling because I feel like this town is incredibly supportive and generous to the nonprofits in the area,” says Metric.

To support the Bozeman Salvation Army, you can donate online to the 2022 Virtual Red Kettle campaign.