12/14/2012 12:34 EST | Updated 02/12/2013 05:12 EST

NHL Lockout Putting Squeeze On Local Charities


With the NHL lockout carrying on through the holiday season, many Edmonton charities say the lack of hockey has meant less funding for their organizations as Christmas approaches.

Christmas Bureau director Wendy Batty says her organization aims to help 65,000 Edmontonians this holiday season.

However, with 12 days left, she said the bureau is far from hitting its $1.8M goal.

“It's a bit of a worry coming this close to Christmas and only being at forty per cent of our goal,” she said .

Batty said a lot of the organization's money is connected to hockey. With the lockout this year, it hasn't seen the money it usually receives from 50-50 draws at Oilers games.

The lockout also means a lack a hockey memorabilia, which usually fetches a good price at fundraising auctions.

“It's a real challenge for them this fall without … [the] most sought after items like signed jerseys, hockey sticks that they provide to silent auctions and other fundraising events.”

Batty said an auction this year came in far lower than what is usually collected.

“The outcome was down about 47 thousand dollars this year. And when we looked at it we realized that was the difference with having NHL hockey in Edmonton and not having NHL hockey in Edmonton.”

She said the Bureau will continue to fundraise up until Christmas with the hope of reaching the target.

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