Red Cross within $2,000 of fundraising challenge

MANATEE — The Southwest Florida and Manatee County chapters of the Red Cross announced Wednesday that they have reached $98,000 of their $100,000 Holiday Challenge goal.

The American Red Cross launched the $100,000 Holiday Challenge to the community in mid November to promote year-end giving in support of disaster readiness and response within Manatee, Sarasota, Hardee and DeSoto counties.

Every dollar donated and designated locally to the Southwest Florida and Manatee County chapters during the chapter is being doubled up to $100,000 thanks to the generosity of Schroeder-Manatee Ranch Inc.(SMR), Neal Communities and the Slater-Kassan Charitable Fund of the Manatee Community Foundation, which have pledged the matching funds for this challenge.

There is still time to donate and get your gift doubled. Donations may be made:

1. Online at

2. By phone at (941) 792-8686 or (941) 379-9300

3. By visiting any local Red Cross Chapter, including the Manatee County Chapter headquarters, 2905 59th St. W., Bradenton, or Manatee County Mid-County Service Center, 10311 Malachite Drive, Lakewood Ranch.