So who carries cash, anyway?

salvation army photo

So Salvation Army donations for 2018 are down, at least in Florida. In Manatee County, for example, donations are down $30,000 so far this year. The lower contributions mean that services cannot be provided to their fullest extent, and shelters may run out of available beds.

What’s driving this drop? I believe part of the problem is that most people I know do not carry cash anymore. Debit cards have eliminated the need for a trip to the ATM for purchases. I first observed this last year. I would look in my wallet to make a donation at one of the Salvation Army kettles only to find some loose change and a bit of lint. Now I recognize that all of that change does add up, but many people merely walked past exuding an “I don’t carry cash” attitude.

Fast forward to this year. My husband and I were walking toward our local market (you know Publix well if you are a fellow Floridian). I said to him, “I’ve got to get some cash,” as I spied the familiar red bucket and jovial bell ringer.

“When what to my wandering eye should appear…”, but a credit/debit card machine to accept my funds. It was simple enough; A single swipe resulted in a $3 donation. Works for me…Unfortunately, I just discovered that my swipe did not yield $3 for the Salvation Army. Those credit/debit machines have a fee attached, so that eats into the donation bottom line.

Another challenge facing the Salvation Army during this giving season is a decrease in volunteers to man the red kettles. Why? I have no idea, and I was unable to find an answer through my research. Maybe I need to step up and volunteer. It would be interesting to witness what drives people to reach in their wallet whether for cash or their debit card.

Keep a sharp eye for the rest of the month…You just may see me ringing the familiar bell. But whether you see me or not, please donate. Merry Christmas!

Referenced: https://www.baynews9.com/fl/tampa/news/2018/12/15/salvation-army-dealing-with-donation-drop–lack-of-volunteers

Stay groovy…

Susie

(Copyright 2018 Susie Krivacic)

 

 

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