Some Calgary charities are struggling to meet their Christmas season donation targets, including the Calgary Women's Emergency Shelter.

Director Ann O'Donnell says the shelter relies heavily on this season for most of its annual cash and toy donations.

"With the cash donations we would buy gift cards for our clients. We would also buy the toys we need, but if someone wants to give something tangible, we certainly could do with some toys and some basic clothing needs for the women at the shelter," said O'Donnell.

The donations are used throughout the year.

"Moms have birthdays, and the kids have birthdays, so it gives us the ability to make people feel as comfortable as possible and not to miss those special occasions in their life."

O'Donnell says there is a lot of empty space on the shelves, which are usually full of toys at this time of year.

The Salvation Army in Calgary is also short on its Christmas donations.

It has set a target of $1 million and has about one third of that amount with nine days left in the kettle campaign.