"It's been a tough year because of the earthquake," said red kettle volunteer Michael Palmer. "You know, people kinda have to hold back a little bit."
The effects of the quake that hit Napa are still being felt today. Donations to the Salvation Army's red kettles are down more than $30,000 compared to the same time last year.
Still, demand for the services the organization provides has grown. That's why they let ABC7 News' cameras inside to show the folks who benefit most, when we give even just a little.
Few people know that better than Dallas Vincent.
Now here as a volunteer, the single mother of seven is just one of the hundreds who go there at Christmas time after having nowhere else to turn.
"It was truly a blessing because they brought toys to my house," she said. "They brought bags full of food. It was truly a blessing."
Overall contributions, which include other forms of giving, are off more than 18 percent. The Salvation Army hands out more than 100 meals to families every day throughout the year, with their biggest push coming at Christmas time.
"So when they did receive those gifts, they were just like, 'wow! Santa Claus is real mommy!'" said Vincent. "It just warmed up my heart, it really did."
The Salvation Army's red kettle program has operated each holiday season for 124 years. This year, they have fewer sites serving a community with a need as great as ever.
"And we do really need the donations," Vincent said. "Everything totally helps everything we receive all goes to the most needy."
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For full coverage of the South Napa Earthquake, click here.