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Empty Stocking Fund donations trailing last year's $1.2 million pace

December 27, 2017 Updated: December 27, 2017 at 7:27 pm
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There's a stocking in need of a little more stuffing.

The Gazette/El Pomar Foundation Empty Stocking Fund campaign has raised about $580,000 through Tuesday - about $40,000 less than at the same time last year.

Organizers said there typically is a rush of donations toward year's end, and there remains enough time for this year's campaign to eclipse last year's nearly $1.2 million haul.

"We've got our work cut out for us to do that, but it is in sight and we can do it," said Chelsey Walker, the fund's campaign manager.

The Empty Stocking Fund is an eight-week campaign over the holiday season that raises money for 20 social service nonprofits operating across the Pikes Peak region.

The fund has raised more than $18 million since its inception in 1984. And every penny will go to those nonprofits, because administrative costs are covered by Wells Fargo, ADD STAFF, the El Pomar Foundation, The Anschutz Foundation and The Gazette.

This year's overall tally does not include the matching funds provided by two partnering foundations.

The El Pomar Foundation is matching $1 for every $3 donated to the Empty Stocking Fund, up to $200,000. And the Bruni Foundation is matching $10,000 for every $100,000 donated, up to $70,000.

Last season's campaign garnered the third-highest total in the program's history. It also marked the 10th consecutive year of having raised at least $1 million.

There's still time to exceed that goal, said Jerry Bruni, the Bruni Foundation's president. The campaign runs through Jan. 19.

"I'm still hopeful that, in the remaining time, contributions accelerate, because it's such a worthy endeavor," Bruni said.

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