Charities across the country are seeing a drop in cash contributions, and food banks are receiving fewer donations because of the recession.

As more people lose their jobs, fewer donations of money and second-hand items are coming in. The problem is compounded by the fact that more out-of-work people are relying on charities to get by.

“People who used to be donors are now using our services and coming to us for help,” said Andrew Burditt, territorial director with the Salvation Army. “It seems donating to charities has become a second priority for most Canadians.”

Salvation Army branches in British Columbia and Alberta are seeing an increase in the number of people using their food banks, but fewer personal belongings are being donated to thrift stores and shelters, he said.