THE chief executive of Launceston's City Mission has urged people to donate to The Examiner Winter Relief Appeal, citing an increased demand from people seeking help.
The 2013 appeal looks set to raise the lowest amount in recent years.
Last year's winter fund-raiser collected more than $56,000 for Northern charities. The total this year is almost $41,000 so far.
The winter appeal ends on August 30.
Money raised will help the valuable work of the Benevolent Society, St Vincent de Paul Society, Salvation Army and City Mission.
City Mission chief executive Stephen Brown said the money would go towards the mission's family services section.
He said with big job losses in the North and the closure of key industries, more families were asking for help in the greater Launceston area.
Mr Brown said the money would enable the City Mission to continue to provide families in need with food, clothing, debt relief and electricity bill support.
``The essentials to get people through difficult situations,'' Mr Brown said.
``These people, because they have run out of funds for everyday things, they won't have food or heating so they are sitting in cold houses and lounge rooms - it's not good.
``At this time of year there is more demand for help with heating accounts because people live in not properly insulated houses, so people run up debts they can't cope with because of heating their home.
``People who don't have jobs are finding it really tough too.''
Mr Brown said if people wanted to support the City Mission, they could also find a bargain in one of the mission's shops and the money raised would help the charity's work.
The mission has stores in locations including Youngtown, Ravenswood and Newnham.