As the recession rages on and budgets continue to shrink, more families in need are turning to Central Indiana non-profits.
For the first time, Dorothy Ballard said she will have to ask for help if she wants a Christmas tree and a present underneath for her 4-year-old nephew, who she adopted as a baby.
Through non-profit, The Flanner House, which is an agency connected to the local United Way. Ballard is hoping to find the help she needs.
"The need is greater than it has been in years past," said Jay Geshay, senior vice president of the United Way of Central Indiana
The United Way of Central Indiana is determined to serve a thousand more area families this year over last. That is 9,000 families.
The problem is 500 of the neediest area families that have been referred to the organization through case workers and its partners still need to be 'adopted' this holiday season. The individual or group adopting the family will donate gifts.
The program is called United Christmas Service.
"You would make the choice as to what you would like to give from their wish list," said Geshay.
For people who rather contribute financially, more than $180,000 is still needed to reach the organization's $800,000 goal. Those funds help families not matched with donor groups with a $30 a person voucher that can be used for food, clothing or small toys.
The Salvation Army's bell ringers are also out on the streets hoping to help raise $3.2 million. It is a big number, but one that is necessary if the organization wants to answer the growing number of requests for help this holiday season.
"We're experiencing people who used to be donors who have now come to us for assistance," said Major John Turner, The Salvation Army divisional commander for Indiana.
Turner said they are offering holiday meals and a few extras. "We'll help provide toys for them Christmas morning so when they get up they'll have something to open."
That is what Ballard wants for her nephew who is too young to understand Christmas may not be the same this year.
"It's hard. It's hard. I can't think about material things because I don't have a job, and I'm having a hard time paying the rent," said Ballard.
To adopt a United Way family or to make a monetary contribution you can go to the organizations website or send a gift to the address below.
United Christmas Service
3901 North Meridian Street
Indianapolis, IN 46208
Last year, more than 28,000 people benefitted through the Adopt-A-Family program and the vouchers.
The Salvation Army also accepts donations online, mail or by text message. Text 'give' to 80888 to make a $10 donation.
Another smaller Greenwood-based organization, The Refuge, has said they are also in need of donations.
Central Indiana non-profits ask for help this holiday season
Indianapolis non-profits say more families are asking for help this Christmas, and they need help with donated toys, food and clothing.