Atlanta, GA: The Salvation Army’s work persists on a worldwide basis in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact. In the Southeastern United States, that response wears many hats, with ongoing service to numerous communities in the region.
In Florence, Alabama, The Salvation Army’s Center of Hope is the only homeless shelter continuing to operate in the Shoals community. With the help of the City of Florence and the region’s Homeless Care Council, The Salvation Army is expanding its sheltering program with other locations postponing service. Members of the homeless community previously dwelling in an area surrounding Veterans Memorial Park were welcomed, with the option to camp outside if individuals feel uncomfortable in the interior of the shelter itself. The Center of Hope is providing laundry facilities, showers and meals, with the City of Florence donating picnic tables, portable toilets, and washing stations to assist with social distancing amid the uptick in shelter guests. In addition, local hospital workers have visited the shelter to provide COVID-19 testing.
Each Monday, The Salvation Army of Rocky Mount, North Carolina is assisting families with widespread food service. In partnership with a local food bank, grocery items, including fresh vegetables are packaged for weekly distribution, and the stockpile is replenished each month. On average, Rocky Mount serves approximately 250 food boxes each Monday during the year but, during the COVID-19 crisis, that number has grown considerably, including peaks that more than double the normal output.
While meeting physical needs is important during this trying time, The Salvation Army of Ocala, Florida recently held a drive-thru distribution targeted at much more. Cars received a box of food, including non-perishable items, produce, baked goods and frozen meats. From there, hot meals were distributed in take-home fashion, with a meal for each member of the household. All told, more than 350 meals were provided, with nearly 200 cars processing through the drive-through line. In addition to food service, activity bags were offered to children, with a Bible distribution and the opportunity for personal prayer with a member of The Salvation Army’s local emotional and spiritual care team.
Continuing a Blog Post written by Brad Rowland, Staff Writer, Southern Spirit Newspaper
Atlanta, GA: Around the world, The Salvation Army is shifting and increasing service to meet the expanding need in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. That extends to the Southeastern United States, with the ever-persistent aim to help others.
The work continues in Florence, Alabama, with increased cleaning measures and extended hours for the emergency shelter. In addition, the Florence Corps is partnering with local senior living facilities to deliver prepared meals, frozen food and household goods, with The Salvation Army also delivering meals to the YMCA for distribution to first responders.
The Salvation Army of Augusta, Georgia will receive a meaningful influx of funding from the United Way, Community Foundation and CSRA COVID-19 Emergency Response fund, with much of that grant going to convert the Center of Hope emergency shelter to a 24-hour facility. With the closing of local family stores, the grant is badly needed, especially with feeding increasing in the shelter. The Salvation Army is now serving three meals and two snacks per day, and the funding also helps with the need to increase staffing to meet the extended need.
A group of neighbors in St. Petersburg, Florida responded to a call to produce washable, reusable face masks in order to cut down spread of the COVID-19 virus. More than 100 colorful and washable masks were donated to The Salvation Army by the group, representing enough to provide for each resident and staff member at the local emergency shelter.
Continuing a regular Blog Post written by Brad Rowland, Staff Writer, Southern Spirit Newspaper
Atlanta, GA: The Salvation Army continues to meet human need in His name without discrimination, even as the COVID-19 pandemic impacts daily life around the world. The work specifically continues in the Southeastern United States, with targeted service to communities.
In coastal Alabama, The Salvation Army is implementing a new feeding program with the aim of assisting community members who are impacted by COVID-19. Other social service organizations have shuttered during the pandemic, leaving a gap in service delivery, and The Salvation Army is using a mobile feeding canteen to distribute bagged lunches and water. Service occurs every Monday, Wednesday and Friday in downtown Mobile.
The Salvation Army also continues to provide youth instruction in several areas, all while ensuring the health and safety of families and staff. In Naples, Florida, that includes daily lessons implemented through The Salvation Army’s Child Development Center. Making use of a Facebook group, families can remain engaged and children continue learning through online instruction on developmentally appropriate programs.
High-risk guests currently residing in The Salvation Army’s shelter in Amarillo, Texas will benefit from a new initiative in partnership with the city of Amarillo and the local HUD office. The Salvation Army, in accordance with CDC social distancing guidelines, secured housing for up to 27 people, with 15 apartment units furnished with donated furniture from its family store. This reduces the active number of shelter residents to approximately 110, which also helps The Salvation Army when implementing social distancing standards.
The Salvation Army has opened a temporary housing center for homeless in Central Virginia, operating in partnership with the Greater Richmond Continuum of care to seek solutions and help individuals through the COVID-19 crisis. The center can house up to 75 adults and features clean bedding, heightened healthcare screenings, shower facilities and daily meal service.
Continuing a regular Blog Post written by Brad Rowland, Staff Writer, The Southern Spirit Newspaper
The Salvation Army continues to respond in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, overcoming the challenges presented and providing essential services to those in need. In the Southern Territory, many locations are mobilizing with flexibility and providing assistance.
The Salvation Army’s Orlando Area Command, in partnership with the City of Orlando, is utilizing a 5,200 square foot tent to accommodate emergency shelter guests. The tent brings the ability to keep shelter occupants safe and maintains normal capacity while keeping in step with CDC recommendations for social distancing.
On Sunday, March 22, The Salvation Army of Mississippi Gulf Coast opened a drive-thru location for food distribution targeted for seniors. Four locations in the area are accepting donations of non-perishable food and cleaning supplies, with plans to distribute items in similar fashion as the crisis continues.
In Rock Hill, South Carolina, The Salvation Army is assisting other non-profit organizations that are running out of food supplies, partnering to ensure that the vulnerable senior population is able to have groceries and hygiene boxes delivered to their homes. In addition, meals are being served to local first responders and 911 dispatch service employees, with food service to more than 50 homeless individuals on Sunday, March 22 between breakfast and lunch.
The Salvation Army of Lubbock, Texas is launching an initiative called “Hope Totes,” targeting seniors and other vulnerable populations and aiming to reach independent seniors living alone and others struggling with the reality of extended facility closures, unexpected life-as-usual changes, relocation, etc. The tokens are essentially boxes containing non-perishable food, hygiene items and paper goods to serve as an interim supplement to support individuals in this trying time. The Salvation Army is seeking donations of cleaning supplies, paper goods and hygiene items to fulfill this initiative.
This is part of a regular Blog Post written by Brad Rowland, Staff Writer, Southern Spirit Newspaper
Atlanta, GA: With the closure of Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida, perishable food items have been donated to The Salvation Army in Orlando. A second truck load of apples, oranges, potatoes, and other fresh produce is greatly assisting Salvation Army staff to help those affected by the Covid 19 outbreak, shelter residents and drop-in clients in need.
“We have been serving the populations most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic, the homeless and senior citizens each day. This generous donation means we can serve so many more in need.” says Captain Ken Chapman, Area Commander, Orlando. The Salvation Army is serving a free community dinner every weekday at 3:30 p.m., and has provided fresh produce to nearly 300 senior citizens nearby.
Atlanta, GA: As the coronavirus spreads across the United States, Salvation Army units across the country stand ready to fight the pandemic. Doors to our shelters and community centers remain open as The Salvation Army provides a haven for those who need a safe place to go. Disaster and social service workers are coordinating with our government partners and are ready to provide aid to those affected by the health and economic impacts of this emergency.
The following are representative of the additional efforts of local Salvation Army units nationwide:
The Salvation Army Brownwood, Texas Service Center serves a free lunch Monday-Friday to those in need from the community. During this uncertain time, instead of serving meals in their building, they have made the necessary adjustments to provide pick up meals. Many families with kids out of school, were able to pick up a plate packed with pulled pork, bread, baked beans, dessert, and tea for lunch! This of course is in addition to those that regularly receive a hot meal at The Salvation Army. “I am grateful for these meals to go. Not only am I on a limited budget but I am at a high risk since I have had chemo in the past. I am also not used to having to prep meals for my daughter all week. Her school is offering meals but not for free. It is 20 plus miles away and she usually rides the bus. Thank you to The Salvation Army of Brownwood” – from a grateful resident.
And in In Lewisville, a suburb of Dallas, Texas. Like many other locations, staff and volunteers at The Salvation Army Lewisville are creatively making necessary adjustments to continue essential services to the community during these uncertain days. Lunch each day is now being delivered “to go” with more than 75 clients picking up their free lunch today. One on one case management meetings are taking place in the mobile kitchen, maintaining appropriate distancing, with staff working from the front of the truck and clients in the back.