"In the remaining days that we have left there is no way we'll be able to overcome that," said Salvation Army Core Officer Tim Grider.
They set a goal for bell ringers to collect $250,000 from the time they start in November through Christmas Eve, a goal they typically reach.
However, with this year's looming fiscal cliff, folks are giving less or just not at all.
"People are holding back because of the fiscal cliff and all that's going on in the economy," said Grider. "Things are tough and tight."
Another issue hindering their donations is the amount of bell ringers they have.
"Believe it or not we have jobs and nobody wants them," Grider said. "We have been short of bell ringers everyday this entire season."
Wednesday's deadly dust storm didn't help their cause. It forced the bell ringers to go home early putting the Salvation Army another $8,000 behind.
Grider said if they don't reach their goal, the families they help across the South Plains will be in trouble.
"We've got to figure out, ok, what are we cutting," said Grider. "Do we cut back on the food that we feed everyday, do we stop accepting men, or do we cut out the women, or do we cut out the families? These are the kind of decisions we're going to have to make."
You can donate at www.savlationarmylubbock.org or at a local bell ringer's kettle.