Charity organizations are feeling the economic crunch when it comes to donations. But they are seeing an increase in people taking advantage of lower cost items in their second hand stores. Anna Wooten is making her dollars stretch this holiday season with the help of the Salvation Army. She is like many others who have been looking to charitable organizations for their shopping needs. "It's a lot less here, and you can get quality goods too. You need to look for anyway to save money at all," said Wooten. It's no secret; our economy is making it difficult for money to go as far as it use to. The Salvation Army has seen a decline in donations, but an increase in the number of families in need of assistance. Salvation Army Corps Officer, Butch Mallard, said the fact that so many people are shopping in their stores, shows there's a need for inexpensive goods. “The traffic in our family stores is up because of the economy. People can't shop in the regular stores so they come to us. But our donations are down because people aren't getting rid of as much stuff because of the hard times," Mallard said. Tighter times have also meant more dollars for organizations like Goodwill. Store sales there are up from last year. Becky Lytel, a Goodwill spokesperson said, "People are picking and choosing what they need the most and where they can go to get a good value." "We need to be a little tighter with the budget so we are shopping a little bit more carefully this year," added Wilmington resident, Michelle Lee. The holiday season has opened the door for many to find shopping alternatives that can go a long way. All donations to the Salvation Army go toward assisting families in our five county region. More than 1,600 families have applied for assistance this holiday season. At Goodwill, 92 cents of every dollar made go to fund services like literacy and disability programs. If you would like more information on how you can donate you can use the following information. Send donations to: Salvation Army of Cape Fear P.O. Box 90 Wilmington, NC 28401 GoodWill www.goodwill.org 5662 Carolina Beach Rd. 910-794-9650
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