100 Days Until Christmas: Hope Marches On
Millions of Americans are still experiencing the ongoing impacts of the pandemic as they struggle to recover and stay in their homes. The Salvation Army remains on the frontlines of need to ensure Hope Marches On this holiday season. Already, The Salvation Army has already spent more than $200 million in direct financial assistance to help people stay in their homes this year.
As of August 16, roughly 1.2 million Americans said they are very likely to face eviction over the next two months because of non-payment. Although the federal government has allocated $47 billion in emergency rental assistance, distribution has been slow and uneven across the country, which compounds concerns that families could be evicted before relief arrives. The end of the federal eviction moratorium could create a spike of homelessness that would overwhelm organizations providing relief.
As the nation’s largest private provider of social services, we continue working to give help and hope to the clients we serve. For many individuals and their families, the immediate future remains uncertain, and they may not be able to celebrate Christmas this year. The following statistics are staggering:
- 63% of Americans have been living paycheck to paycheck since the pandemic began.
- 15% of home renters are behind on housing payments and may face eviction. Nearly 89% of rental assistance funds have not been distributed to support them.
- 17 million people are food insecure.
- The highest number of U.S. overdoses in a single year occurred in 2020.
The Salvation Army is now serving a new population of families who have never needed us before. Although the request for assistance is greater than ever, so is the opportunity to make a difference. It’s the reason we started our “Hope Marches On” campaign 100 days before Christmas. It allows maximum time and opportunities to raise funds that will provide for the health and well-being of our neighbors who are struggling.
We are relying on the generous public to help purchase Christmas gifts through our Angel Tree program, put food on the table, pay bills, and provide shelter for those without a home. The Salvation Army is estimating $175 million needs to be raised—almost 50% more than raised through Red Kettles in 2020—to keep Americans in their homes this holiday season.
Consider how you could help your neighbors in need this Christmas season and bring hope to your community. Donations and volunteers are always appreciated.