Salvation Army of Omaha sets $2.8 million goal for Tree of Lights Campaign

Omaha, NE – The Salvation Army of Omaha says 400 more families signed up for Christmas assistance this year than last.

The Tree of Lights Campaign, with its familiar bell ringers and red kettles, began Friday. The goal of this year's campaign is to raise $2.8 million. Salvation Army of Omaha spokeswoman Susan Eustice says funds raised during the Tree of Lights Campaign benefit 23 programs.

One of those programs is Christmas assistance. Eustice says of the 400 new families, 60 percent of them have never sought assistance from a charity before. Another program, called material assistance, helps Omahans who need assistance paying their bills. Eustice says requests for material assistance are up 30 percent.

In addition to the red kettles stationed throughout the Omaha area, Eustice says you can host a red kettle online. The virtual red kettle campaign lets you send emails to family and friends requesting donations.

The Tree of Lights Campaign ends December 24.