ALBUQUERQUE, Jan. 5, 2013 /Christian Newswire
/ — Joy Junction, New Mexico’s largest emergency homeless shelter, served as many as 50,000 more meals in 2012 than in 2011.
Joy Junction Founder and CEO Dr. Jeremy Reynalds said, “We have seen an especially large increase on our mobile feeding unit-The Lifeline of Hope. We’re seeing more people daily who have to make an agonizing daily decision between eating and having a place to stay, or eating and putting gas in their cars.”
That increase in meals served has come despite a serious revenue shortfall. By the time everything had been tallied up, Joy Junction received just over $134,000 less in donations for 2012 when compared to 2011 revenue.
The donation shortfall, Reynalds believes, was compounded by fear of the fiscal cliff and what lay ahead.
While the charitable tax deduction remained relatively unscathed, it appears that higher income donors will have less discretionary income in 2013. However, the issue of the charitable tax deduction will be back on the table later this year.
Reynalds said, “With need up and
donations down, this is still an obviously nerve wracking time for us. I met with a few longtime friends of Joy Junction in mid-2012 who said if their charitable tax deduction changes, they will be forced to cut back on their giving to us and other charities. With an increasing need, that’s downright scary-in fact, potentially tragic.”
In early 2012, Reynalds met with some of the New Mexico Congressional Delegation staff in Washington as part of a brief lobbying effort by some members of the Association of Gospel Rescue Missions
, of which Joy Junction is a long time member.
Reynalds said he urged congressional staff to encourage their bosses not to change the charitable tax deduction.
Others charities with no experience raising money in the private sector that depend on government funding
may find cuts in those programs cause them to die a quick death.
Fortunately, Joy Junction does not receive government funding
from any level. Most donations come from individuals, and the rest comes from churches, businesses and organizations.
However, the donations from these sources seem most at risk if lawmakers tinker with the deductibility of charitable donations in the months ahead.
Reynalds said, “During the upcoming year, we will tell our elected officials that tax reform and other policy priorities affect Joy Junction and the people we serve.”