Charities see drop in donations - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Charities see drop in donations

DUBUQUE (KWWL) -- Some Eastern Iowa charities notice a drop in donations after the holiday giving rush.

Sunday lunch at the Dubuque Rescue Mission saw more than 75 diners.

"Sunday's our best meal," regular diner Duane Crippes said.

The Dubuque Rescue Mission runs a residential program for men and a soup kitchen for anybody.

"For the people that, you know, don't have anywhere else to go," Crippes said.

It's all funded partly by the Mission's attached thrift store.

"It's what pays the bills here," kitchen manager Gene Weber said, adding that donations are low this time of year.

"After the holidays," Weber explained, "everybody does all their giving, and they're getting new furniture and TVs for Christmas or something, so they'll donate, but after that's over, then we start running short."

Dan Lightfoot is a resident at the Rescue Mission, who said the facility offers him what Weber calls the big three: shelter, clothing and food.

"Staying out of the cold," Lightfoot said, "that's always a good thing."

Lightfoot said he pays his own rent to stay at the Mission, but many of the up to 30 residents earn their keep by helping out around the Mission.

Weber said the food at the soup kitchen comes largely from donations, both canned and perishable.

"When you start having 75 to 100 people coming through here each meal, it takes a lot of food," he said.

The kitchen and thrift store will accept donations large and small, Weber said.

Of course, the Dubuque Rescue Mission is just one of many Eastern Iowa charities suffering from a post-holiday drop in donations. Organizations say they're looking for money, clothing, furniture, food and volunteers' time.

Online Reporter Becca Habegger

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