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Inflation could impact charitable giving

It's the busiest time of the year for the East Stroudsburg Salvation Army and inflation isn't just impacting those in need of help, but also those who donate.

EAST STROUDSBURG, Pa. — It's always a busy day at the East Stroudsburg Salvation Army, helping those in need.

But between the emergency food pantry, the soup kitchen, senior food box distributions, and the emergency shelter, employees say the number of people needing help is greater than last year.

'People are starting to face the challenges that we all are at the grocery store with the rise in prices. Is it, 'Do I heat my house or feed my family?'" said Rose London, the development director at the Salvation Army.

London says the high prices on just about everything come during the nonprofit's busiest time of the year, the winter and holiday season.

It doesn't just impact those in need of help but also those lending a helping hand and donating.

Newswatch 16 spoke with Johan Eliasson, a political economy professor at East Stroudsburg University. He said this year, it'll be hard to predict what people will give to a charity if any at all.

"The average person who gives to charities because of the goodness of their heart and the average income owner may struggle to do that if they have to choose between buying gifts for family members and giving to charity to someone, they don't know," said Eliasson.

"We are concerned," said London. "But the Salvation Army will not close its doors, and people in this community, I have found, in the Poconos, having grown up here, left, and come back after a really long time, are incredibly generous, and we ask that people just give what they can and every dollar helps."

If you can't donate this year, whether it be money, food, or toys, London asks you to donate your time.

"We rely tremendously on volunteers, not just during the bell-ringing season, but if they can give their time to come and volunteer, we always need help," London said.

If you are interested in helping out the East Stroudsburg Salvation Army in any capacity, click here.

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