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As economy swoons, nonprofits feel economic strain

Posted October 14, 2008
Updated October 15, 2008

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— The government's efforts to jump start the credit markets have led to some improvement on Wall Street this week. However, economic recovery doesn't happen quickly, and nonprofits are taking a big hit.

During difficult financial times, there are more people in need of help and fewer people giving.

At the Wake County Salvation Army, there was barely enough food to feed the 25 families who depend on the organization's help.

“We looked at our pantry and thought, there's not enough for 25 families. So, we had to literally send an employee to a wholesale club with a $1,000 to purchase [food],” said Paige Bagwell, director of operations and communications for the Wake County Salvation Army.

It was a drastic move for the Salvation Army, which is in desperate need of food pantry items.

“We live off of the food donations. We don't typically buy for our pantries. We need people to give because, if we continue to use our money to buy the food for the pantry, we're not able to spend money on financial assistance or the toys for children,” Bagwell said.

Across town, another nonprofit is also struggling.

“Times are tough. And when times are tough, people tend to give up their animals. That's one thing that they can give up,” said Hope Hancock, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County executive director.

The shelter has seen an increase in people giving up their pets during the last few months. With more animals coming into the shelter and fewer adoptions taking place, the SPCA is tightening its budget.

“We're holding the line on expenses, while not compromising animal care. But we're watching every single nickel and dime,” Hancock said.

Both nonprofits say the best way you help is to give money if you can. To give to the Salvation Army, call 1-800.785-2769. To make a donation to the SPCA, call 919-772-2326.

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  • jgirl5830 Oct 15, 2008

    they better get used to this, I think people are going to be tight with their money for quite a while.

  • beachboater Oct 15, 2008

    People willing to give up their pets in hard times shouldn't have had a pet to start with. Would you give up your children in hard times?

    My pets are part of the family.

  • PeaceOut2017 Oct 15, 2008

    I'm feeling strain too, join the club