Cedar Rapids' Salvation Army exceeds fundraising goal

Organization adds up donations after holiday campaign

A man places a donation into a red kettle as Salvation Army youth recreation coordinator Brad Weyer of Cedar rapids (left) and youth development coordinator Courtney Grau also of Cedar Rapids (right) ring bells Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013 outside of the Johnson Ave. Hy-Vee in Cedar Rapids. Tuesday’s bucket blitz was the kickoff event for this years red kettle campaign which hopes to raise $750,000. (Brian Ray/The Gazette-KCRG)
A man places a donation into a red kettle as Salvation Army youth recreation coordinator Brad Weyer of Cedar rapids (left) and youth development coordinator Courtney Grau also of Cedar Rapids (right) ring bells Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013 outside of the Johnson Ave. Hy-Vee in Cedar Rapids. Tuesday’s bucket blitz was the kickoff event for this years red kettle campaign which hopes to raise $750,000. (Brian Ray/The Gazette-KCRG)

CEDAR RAPIDS — The Salvation Army in Cedar Rapids exceeded its goal for the holiday fundraising campaign.

A total of $774,965 was donated during the season, surpassing the local Salvation Army’s fundraising goal of $748,000, according to a news release.

Holiday fundraising makes up about 47 percent of the annual budget for Cedar Rapids’ Salvation Army, said Lia Pontarelli, director of development and communications.

“The people here have repeatedly shown that they truly desire to see changes made in their community,” said Alan Hellstrom, major in the local Salvation Army Corps. “We are continually blessed with how giving our neighbors are.”

Hellstrom said the donations will go toward funding youth and senior programs, rent and utility assistance, transportation and emergency disaster services, meal programs and food boxes.

“We cannot say thank you enough,” Hellstrom said.

“Just because the bells aren’t out there ringing anymore, we hope that the community will keep us in mind throughout the year and continue to help support us through volunteer hours and donations,” he said.

l Comments: (319) 368-8516; makayla.tendall@thegazette.com

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