The Salvation Army is at the fore-front during disasters, helping those in need.

Salvation Army Staged for Deployment as Hurricane Irma Heads for Georgia

ATLANTA, GEORGIA (September 11, 2017) – The Salvation Army in Georgia is ready to provide physical, emotional, and spiritual care to survivors and relief workers as Hurricane Irma makes its way up the western Florida coast Sunday and Monday and impacts Georgia late Monday afternoon. Disaster units are staged and ready to serve, and additional resources outside Georgia are ready to mobilize and offer additional assistance as needed.

A total of 18 mobile kitchens (canteens) – each with the capacity to serve an average of 750 meals per day – are either currently staged in, or ready to deploy to, anticipated impact areas throughout the state. An Incident Management Team (IMT) is positioned in Atlanta to coordinate the ongoing disaster response, but is ready to move closer to impacted areas if needed.

“We are staging critical relief supplies in key locations in preparation and will deploy close to the worst affected areas in the coming days,” said Major Douglas McClure, The Salvation Army Georgia Incident Management Team Commander. “We are grateful to our partners during times of disaster who provide essential disaster supplies.”

As Georgia Governor Nathan Deal declared the entire state of Georgia under a state of emergency today ahead of Irma’s appearance, Salvation Army units throughout the state are working closely with local Emergency Operations Centers (EOCs) and community partners. Many have opened their doors as emergency shelters and others are supporting city and American Red Cross shelter operations with mass feeding.

Currently, The Salvation Army in Georgia has served over 4,000 meals, 7,000 snacks and beverages, and provided emotional and spiritual care to over 3,000 individuals.

“The Salvation Army is already at work in many communities that find themselves in the path of the storm,” said McClure. “Georgia can rest assured The Salvation Army is here and committed to serving the needs of those impacted as long as is needed.”

To make a financial donation to support the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts please visit www.helpsalvationarmy.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY.

For the latest information on The Salvation Army disaster response, please visit www.disaster.SalvationArmyUSA.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/SalvationArmyGeorgia and www.twitter.com/TSAGeorgia

Signs of Hope

Hope is an amazing thing. It can take a person by the hand and lead them out of the depths of despair. It can raise up a community out of unthinkable disaster. And it can bless us with immeasurable spiritual riches in the midst of desperate times.

When Hurricane Harvey hit the tiny coastal town of Port Lavaca, Texas, many people found themselves dazed and confused. In the aftermath of the storm, their little community was left for a time with no power, tainted water, and scarce, if any, word as to how bad the situation was in their little corner of Texas. Uncertainty prevailed.

But imagine facing the storm when you cannot hear or communicate with anyone to express your fear or how much you need help. There is no aloneness like silence in a raging storm. No more feeling of hopelessness than not being able to make yourself understood in a life-threatening situation.

“What do you want?” The Salvation Army canteen volunteers asked. “How many meals?” Trying a little louder they asked the woman energetically motioning to them, “Are you OK?”

With increased worry and frantic expressions, the woman signed to the volunteers that she was deaf, but to no avail. The volunteers did not understand what she communicating to them in sign language – I AM DEAF.

Peering through the canteen window, new soldier and recent Baylor University graduate, Laura Stevenson, saw the commotion just below her. She quickly stepped out of the canteen and approached the deaf woman signing “It’s OK, I’ve been signing for five years! What do you want?”

Worry and tension faded into joy and laughter as the woman signed back to Laura, “I did not know you would have people who signed – this is amazing!”

The following signing conversations were filled with more joy and laughter as the woman signs to Laura of her desperate situation. “My house is completely destroyed. If you did not have food, I would not have been able to eat today,” she signed. As Laura signs back to her that The Salvation Army will be here for as long as the community needs and that she can come as many times as she wants, her hope was restored.

According to Laura, signing is a very conceptual language and much of it is beyond words. Laura says she never got the deaf woman’s name. Maybe names are not that important when hope and joy transcend uncertainty and despair.

Laura and her husband Tyler, a Salvation Army Mission Specialist at the Waco, Texas corps, plan to become Salvation Army officers and look forward to entering Evangeline Booth College next year. “We love helping people and being a part of what The Salvation Army stands for,” says Laura, “because we are known for being the hands and feet of Christ.”

Yes, it is a very bright and hopeful sign that the mission of The Salvation Army, to share the Gospel and help others in their time of need, will steadfastly march on with people like the Stevenson’s joining the ranks.

How you can give help and hope

The best way to give help and hope after a disaster is to make a financial donation. Monetary contributions also support local economies and ensure that businesses can operate when relief supplies diminish.

Online: helpsalvationarmy.org

Donate by Phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY

Mail Checks to:

The Salvation Army PO Box 1959 Atlanta, GA 30301

Please designate “Hurricane Harvey” on all checks.

Text to Give: STORM to 51555

The Salvation Army Stands Strong in Victoria

Victoria, Texas (September 4, 2017) In response to the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, The Salvation Army is supporting one of the largest disaster relief operations in its history. To date, The Salvation Army has deployed 92 mobile feeding units (canteens) to impacted areas in the state of Texas from across the country. Joining them are Salvation Army trained disaster workers from across the United States and Canada.

In the greater Victoria area, The Salvation Army is currently providing feeding, hydration and emotional and spiritual care at various sites in Victoria, Colhoun, Refugio, and Goliad counties.

The Salvation Army has a standing fleet of canteens designed for rapid and free-standing response in times of emergency. “Ten Salvation Army canteens from Texas, Kansas, and Oklahoma are specifically deployed to serve Victoria and surrounding areas,” said Captain Chris Powell, The Salvation Army Incident Management Team Director serving the Victoria area. “The canteens are stocked twice a day with food and drinks ready to serve affected areas. They have the ability to respond quickly to changing conditions to serve those in need.”

To date The Salvation Army has served approximately 4,000 meals and snacks, and 8,000 drinks a day in the greater Victoria area. Response to The Salvation Army’s presence has been extremely positive and appreciative. “My house is destroyed and I would not have eaten today if you had not been here,” said a woman from Port Lavaca, “Thank you!”

“The Salvation Army has been on the ground helping residents get back on their feet so they can start to rebuild,” said Lieutenant Jeremy Mockabee, Operations Chief for The Salvation Army’s Victoria Incident Management Team. “The Salvation Army is here standing strong for the local community, ready to respond aggressively and serve compassionately as long as we are needed.”

How People Can Help

The best way to help after a disaster is to make a financial donation. Monetary contributions also support local economies and ensure that businesses can operate when relief supplies diminish.

Online: helpsalvationarmy.org

Donate by Phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY

Mail Checks to:

The Salvation Army PO Box 1959 Atlanta, GA 30301

Please designate “Hurricane Harvey” on all checks.

Text to Give: STORM to 51555

 

The Salvation Army of Georgia Canteens on the Way to Texas

Eleven mobile feeding units (canteens) from The Salvation Army of Georgia are on the way to Texas destined to help those affected by Hurricane Harvey. The Georgia canteens join 42 other canteens from around the southeast that have been on the ground in Texas since before Hurricane Harvey made landfall early last week.

The canteens will deploy to Houston with 27 Salvation Army staff, officers, and volunteers to help with relief efforts. They join 60 other volunteer teams and mobile feeding units already in Texas In the upcoming weeks, The Salvation Army will continue to send teams as needed, with an additional 450 canteens on standby throughout the United States.

“So far, nearly sixty inches of rain has fallen in the Gulf Coast region. The Salvation Army served victims after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Matthew, but we’ve never seen anything like this. We will be on the ground in Texas to help those impacted by this disaster as long as we’re needed,” says Salvation Army Major Mark Woodcock.

The Salvation Army has a fleet of mobile feeding units designed for rapid and free-standing response in times of emergency. The canteens can be stocked with three full days of food and drinks, and can serve 1,500 meals per day. After deployment, the mobile canteens can be restocked and moved throughout affected areas.

On Tuesday, the first of several of Georgia’s Salvation Army Incident Management Teams (IMT) deployed to one of the hardest hit areas around the city of Victoria, Texas. The IMT will monitor the continually changing situation in the area and communicate with state and local officials to coordinate efforts and respond effectively. In addition, a representative from The Salvation Army will work with the State Operational Command (SOC), located in Austin, Texas, to help coordinate relief efforts among federal, state and local organizations.

Those who want to help people directly affected by Hurricane Harvey are asked to donate in the following ways:

Online: helpsalvationarmy.org

Donate by phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY

Text to give: text STORM51555

To receive a donation link via text: Text STORM to 51555

For the latest emergency disaster services news, please visit www.disaster.salvationarmymusa.org and follow the disaster services team on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

 

Georgia Team Serving in Texas

Captain Chris Powell of Brunswick, Georgia, leads Hurricane Harvey relief efforts for the Georgia Incident Management Team in Victoria, Texas.  read more…

Georgia Salvation Army Team Deploys for Victoria TX for Hurricane Harvey

The Salvation Army of Georgia is prepared and on stand-by, ready to help the people affected by Hurricane Harvey.

“The impact of this hurricane is dramatic,” says Lanita Lloyd, Emergency Disaster Director for The Salvation Army of Georgia. “Due to the size of the population impacted, including Houston, Texas, the county’s fourth largest city, we anticipate this will be the largest and longest emergency response in the history of The Salvation Army in America.”

The Salvation Army of Georgia has a fleet of mobile feeding units (canteens) designed for rapid and free-standing response in times of emergency. Eighteen Salvation Army canteens in Georgia stand ready to be deployed wherever needed at a moment’s notice to help those in need. The canteens can be stocked with three full days of food and drinks ready to serve affected areas. After deployment, the mobile canteens have the ability to restock and move throughout affected areas.

A specially trained and experienced Incident Command Team (ICT) is currently deploying to one of the hardest hit areas around the city of Victoria, Texas. The ICT will monitor the continually changing situation in the area and communicate with state and local officials to coordinate efforts and respond effectively. In addition, a representative from The Salvation Amy will work with the State Operational Command (SOC), located in San Antonio, Texas, to help coordinate relief efforts among federal, state and local organizations.

In times of disaster, The Salvation Army traditionally serves and prepares meals from its mobile canteens, helps distribute cleaning supplies, and offers comfort to those impacted. According to Lanita Lloyd, “The best way to help survivors and relief workers is to make a financial contribution.” Monetary donations allow disaster responders to immediately meet the specific needs of disaster survivors as the situation continues to be assessed.

Currently, The Salvation Army is not accepting in-kind donations from the general public for disaster relief operations. However, The Salvation Army depends upon your donation of used clothing and other items to support local programming. Please consider donating your used clothing, used furniture, and other items to your local Salvation Army Family Store.

Those who want to help people directly affected by Hurricane Harvey are asked to consider the following ways to help;

Donations may be made:

Online: helpsalvationarmy.org

Donate by phone: 1-800–SAL-ARMY

Mail checks to: The Salvation Army P.O. BOX 1959 Atlanta, GA 30301

Please designate ‘Hurricane Harvey’ on all checks.

To receive a donation link via text: Text STORM to 51555

For the latest emergency disaster services news, please visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and follow the disaster services team on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

The Salvation Army Continues Long-Term Recovery in Georgia

The Salvation Army Rebuilding Homes and Lives Throughout Impacted Area

TSA continues South Georgia reliefALBANY, GA (June 19, 2017) – The Salvation Army continues to provide long-term emergency relief services to residents whose lives were forever changed in January 2017 following a series of deadly tornadoes that ravaged parts of South Georgia.

Within minutes of the first tornadoes touching down, The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Response (EDS) teams deployed multiple mobile feeding units throughout affected areas. Over 19,500 meals, snacks, and drinks were provided, as well as emotional and spiritual care, to thousands of survivors throughout impacted areas.

According to the National Weather Service, the tornado outbreak in South Georgia was one of the largest on record. Twenty tornadoes hit Georgia within a three-day period between January 21 and 23, tearing a 70-mile path through five Georgia counties. Over 15,000 families were affected by the storms, with over 500 homes destroyed and another 1,700 reporting damage.

“From day one, The Salvation Army has been helping individuals and families who suffered due to the tornadoes” said Lanita Lloyd, Director of Emergency Disaster Services for The Salvation Army of Georgia. “These events have affected our communities – where we live and serve every day – our neighbors. We are committed to supporting long-term recovery efforts throughout Georgia.”

The Albany and Dougherty County areas were hit hardest by the tornadoes. As the disaster operation eventually transitioned from immediate response to long-term recovery, The Albany Salvation Army joined with local churches, businesses, and other organizations to establish a Long-Term Recovery Group to support relief efforts as a team. In those affected areas where a long-term recovery group does not exist, The Salvation Army will continue to assess and help fulfill the needs of impacted families.

It is anticipated that the long-term recovery will last through the summer, or until available funds run out. To date, The Salvation Army has raised over $300,000 for immediate and long-term recovery efforts. According to Major Kelley English, The Salvation Army officer for Albany, GA, the need still outweighs the resources available and any continued support would greatly help affected South Georgia communities in their quest to return to normal.

“Some people have exhausted their FEMA and insurance money to help get them back to normal, or had no money at all,” said Major English. “It’s great to be able to help people in their time of need in a real, tangible, and significant way.”

The Salvation Army’s focus is to help with unmet needs, which are those not obtained through FEMA, insurance, and other similar sources. Qualified households are able to obtain up to $3,000 as reimbursement for expenses like home repair, appliance replacement, medicine, temporary housing, and other disaster-related expenses.

“Long-term recovery is a difficult path. The process of rebuilding homes and lives takes time and patience,” said Major English. “The Salvation Army will work with local governments, organizations and community members to make sure every individual and family affected by these tornadoes is helped.”

Those seeking assistance for tornado-related expenses are asked to contact The Salvation Army of Albany, GA at 229-435-1428.

How to Help

The best way to help people before, during, and through the long-term recovery efforts of a disaster is to make a financial donation. Financial donations enable disaster responders and aid providers to meet the specific needs of disaster survivors when and where they are needed most.

Financial donations go directly toward long-term relief efforts for those affected by the 2017 South Georgia tornadoes and can be made;

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About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. Eighty-two cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.

The Salvation Army Responds to Call to Help West Mims Firefighters

West-Mims-FireThe Salvation Army responded to a request from Charlton County local emergency management authorities in Georgia to provide food and hydration to firefighters battling a fire spreading beyond the Okefenokee swamp and threatening residents of St. George and Folkston, Georgia.  The West Mims fire has already burned more 140,000 acres in the area. More than 600 firefighters from across the country are now working to control the fire, which broke out in early April from a lightning strike.

A Salvation Army canteen (mobile feeding unit) from St. Marys, Georgia moved quickly to provide food and hydration to firefighters working around the clock fighting the fires. Local authorities estimate that this may be an extended disaster response due to the drought and wind conditions in the area. The Salvation Army was requested to provide meals for firefighters, and has currently provided 1,160 meals, 1,425 snacks, and 629 drinks.

The canteen from St. Marys, Georgia will continue its feeding and hydration operation and has establish schedules for prepping and serving food for the upcoming weeks. Over 50 volunteers from the St. Marys Service Center are prepared to help with the relief operations. St. Marys has partnered with the St. George Church of God, who offered their facility with a commercial kitchen and cooks, plus volunteer support. Local emergency management is coordinating delivery of food to responders as they take breaks to eat and return to the work of fighting the fires.

“This response may take a good while, so we really need volunteers who will be able to help for an extended time,” said St. Marys Service Director Charlene Sears. “We are preparing to help the firefighters for as long as they need us.”

To volunteer or donate needed items locally, Service Center Director Sears asks people to contact The Salvation Army of Camden County at 912-882-2200. Items most needed are shelf-stable foods, snacks, water, soft drinks, single packaged eye drops and lip balm.

How to Help
The best way to help after a disaster is to make a financial donation. Monetary donations allow disaster responders to immediately meet the specific needs of disaster survivors as the situation continues to be assessed.

According to Georgia Division Emergency Disaster Services Director, Lanita Lloyd, the wildfire situation in South Georgia changes daily and situational responses are continually being evaluated and updated. Lloyd summarized The Salvation Army’s response to the Mims Fires saying, “The Salvation Army is committed to provide aid and comfort to those affected by the wildfires as long as it is needed.”

TSA Responds to I-85 Bridge Collapse

The Salvation Army Responds to I-85 Bridge Collapse

TSA Responds to I-85 Bridge CollapseATLANTA, GA (March 31, 2017) – The Salvation Army Metro Atlanta Command responded to a collapsed bridge on I-85 caused by an extensive fire by serving over 200 meals, snacks, and drinks to emergency personnel. A Salvation Army canteen (mobile feeding kitchen) from the Metro Atlanta Area Command’s Red Shield Shelter was deployed on site from 10:00pm to 4:00am.

“We were in continuous contact with GEMA and the Fulton County Emergency Management team,” said Major Jack Butler, Emergency Disaster Director for The Salvation Army’s Georgia Division. “They were delighted we were there to provide services to emergency personnel.”

Service efforts to emergency personnel extended as needed throughout the night until 4:00am, at which time Fulton Emergency Management thanked The Salvation Army for their timely service. In the times of disaster, Salvation Army officers and staff provide food, hydration, spiritual care, and if needed, shelter for impacted individuals, families, and emergency personnel. Mobile kitchens and canteen units are capable of reaching disaster sites quickly to serve those in need.

“We were able to serve fire and police as they contained the disaster and made the area safe,” said Sergeant Janeane Schmidt, Director of The Salvation Army’s Metro Atlanta Red Shield Shelter. “The city of Atlanta can rest assured that The Salvation Army stands ready to help at a moment’s notice to help in times of need.”

Salvation Army takes ‘canteens’ to the streets to serve meals

Tornado-Serving-Albany-WALBFebruary 2, 2017 (ALBANY, GA) — It’s always said breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

That’s why every morning for the past week and a half, volunteers at the Salvation Army have started their day in the kitchen.

On the menu for breakfast this week are sausage biscuits, fresh from the oven, individually wrapped and loaded up into emergency disaster vehicles known as “canteens.” The food is then delivered to storm victims across Dougherty County and Southwest Georgia.

The canteens started rolling out the day after the devastating January 22nd storm.

“We found people that nobody had been by there house in two or three days. And they didn’t have any electricity and they were cold. So we gave them a blanket,” said Salvation Army’s Harold Boling.

And for Boling and other Salvation Army volunteers that’s what it’s all about: Serving others and accepting nothing in return but plenty of thank you’s and hugs from grateful residents.

“We had no power for about six days over here, and just to get a meal it meant so much to us over here,” said resident Deborah Jordan.

But most times it’s more than just a meal that they serve.

“For us it’s not just about going out and feeding which is important, but its also as well, to be able to let someone tell their story,” said Salvation Army’s Ruth Kenyon.

The Salvation Army will continue serving meals from the emergency disaster vehicles until the end of the week. After that, they’ll focus on the next phase of recovery and helping storm victims one-on-one.

Article and video from WALB

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