Charitable Organizations Expect More Need This Holiday Season - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Charitable Organizations Expect More Need This Holiday Season

East Texas charitable organizations, such as the Salvation Army and PATH say they expect to have more people looking to them this year for help through the holidays.  With the closure of the Goodyear Plant and the layoffs announced by Tyler Pipe this week, they expect to have a higher number of applicants.

"If you plan on making end of year donations, make them now because right now we're out of money," said PATH Executive Director Christina Fulsom.  She says charitable organizations face an uphill battle towards the end of the year.

Some of the PATH programs that are in dire need right now include: the Emergency Services Program, which helps people with their rent, utilities and medication and their Christmas In The Neighborhood, which helps provide a family with a Christmas meal and gifts for the children.

"We have probably twice as many families this year that have already enrolled in the program. We need at least 70 more sponsors for that program," said Fulsom.

The Salvation Army, which kicked off its Angel Tree program today, says the recent closures in the manufacturing sector will affect demand in the last weeks of the year. "With the layoffs that we've seen happen in the past couple of weeks, we really are expecting to see that number to grow," said Salvation Army commanding officer John Falin.

Fulsom says the time to help the community is now. "If people were able to contribute, in making their end of the year gift at the end of December, if they can make their gift now, then we can put it to good use," said Fulsom.

"We really rely on the partnership that we have in the community in Tyler to work through the Salvation Army and distribute the gifts to these children who otherwise would wake up on Christmas Day morning and not have anything under their Christmas tree," said Falin.

The organizations say every year it's a struggle to help everyone out, but somehow they manage, with the help of the community.  

If you'd like to adopt an angel, you can go to Broadway Square Mall or any Regions Bank.   To make a donation to PATH, you can drop off food, clothing or funds at PATH. That's located at 402 West Front St. Their number is 597-4044.      

Oralia Ortega, Reporting.


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