Three months ago, the Pecan Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross anticipated ending its fiscal year on June 30 with a deficit of about $14,000.

The deficit was less than anticipated — $9,674 — and the chapter was able to make an $8,000 deposit thanks to a single donation on July 6, chapter Executive Director Minessa Mesic said.

But the chapter’s financial worries aren’t over, Mesic said.

“I feel better, but I’m still concerned. It’s not keeping me awake like it used to,” she said.

As the year wound down, Red Cross officials were making a “neighbor-to-neighbor” plea, sending letters to donors in Brown, Mills and San Saba counties asking for help.

The letters stated that the chapter was “in true jeopardy of having to close its doors.”

“Our small … organization’s mission to serve our area is being challenged due to extremely low donor revenues,” the letters stated.

Mesic said the letters “brought us some results. It didn’t bring the full results the chapter needed, but we can breathe a little better for a little while, but not for long,” Mesic said.

The chapter’s board is planning ways to increase fund-raising, including participation in a state-wide spring campaign and making more “face-to-face” requests, Mesic said. The board recently approved a $110,000 budget for the 2007-’08 fiscal year.

Mesic said earlier that the chapter typically ends a fiscal year with a small surplus.

Two paid staff members — Mesic and chapter assistant Terri Kaye Burross, who is half-time — and about 60 volunteers keep the chapter running.