May 11, 2019 – Oklahoma City, OK – The Salvation Army of Arkansas and Oklahoma is providing emergency disaster services after a series of severe storms have impacted the two states since April 30. A State of Emergency has been declared for over 70 counties across Arkansas and Oklahoma. Flooding is becoming an issue in many areas of both states due to the amount of rain received over the past several weeks.
Pine Bluff, Arkansas
A tornado was reported in Pine Bluff on Wednesday causing major damage to an apartment complex where several residents lost everything. The Salvation Army of Pine Bluff provided emotional and spiritual care to over 30 individuals as well as a hydration station for the responders and residents affected by the storm. They will continue to work with community partners to identify and address further needs. Without available lodging, Mayor Shirley Washington requested The Salvation Army’s assistance with providing shelter for 14 displaced individuals over the weekend.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to those affected by the tornado, said Captain Chwight Olige, Pine Bluff Salvation Army Commanding Officer. “We are prepared to serve meals and provide clothing vouchers and emotional and spiritual support. We are here for the community.”
Pittsburg County, Oklahoma
The Salvation Army of Muskogee provided approximately 400 meals to survivors of storms which crossed two counties on April 30 and May 1. The Salvation Army is participating in the MARCs (Multi-Agency Resource Centers) in Haileyville and Blue, Oklahoma.
“It was a privilege to be able to drive around the community offering a bottle of water or lemonade and provide a meal. It was a beautiful reminder that when things get hard, you can lean on those around you to help you get through it. Everyone was willing to help their neighbor. It was humbling to provide a pat on the back or offer a word of prayer,” says Risa Robinson, who serves as Evangelistic Youth Outreach Director at The Salvation Army of Muskogee.
The Salvation Army continues to work with state emergency operations in both Arkansas and Oklahoma. This includes partners with VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) as assessments continue in the impacted areas to determine unmet needs and service opportunities.
The best way to help after a disaster is to make a financial donation. By making a cash donation, it allows The Salvation Army to purchase what is needed at the time it is needed while supporting the impacted area’s economy. Go to www.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY to make a monetary donation.