The Salvation Army in Central Kentucky: LemonAiD

Salvation Army Central Kentucky’s LemonAiD program empowers young people to make a positive difference in their community by operating a lemonade stand during the month of July and donating the proceeds to help homeless children residing in The Salvation Army’s Emergency Homeless Shelter.

The Central Kentucky Salvation Army has a 152 bed shelter for the homeless trying to make ends meet, a day care for little ones that is Head Start approved, a clinic run by a physician and University of Kentucky student volunteers, and a Boys & Girls Club that serves 600 children each year, replete with a basketball court, a computer room, and a couple of very popular fooz tables.
But the Central Kentucky Salvation Army is about more than programs. It’s about people.
Last Friday morning, 30 board members showed up for a retreat to brainstorm on attracting younger supporters to the work and ministry of The Salvation Army.
30 board members. On a weekday. Early. Pre-donuts.

Marcia Larson, Salvation Army National Advisory Board member presenting to board members of The Salvation Army – Lexington, KY.

This committed board is galvanizing Lexington & Georgetown volunteers like the 1,593 who raised $48,000 this year running Lemon Aid stands to support homeless children in Lexington.  Or the volunteers getting ready to run in the Scott County 5K walk later this month.

Salvation Army officers like Majors Debra & Steve Ashcraft who give of their time, talent, and treasure as they pour their lives into their community. As they took my mom and me around the Salvation Army campus last week, Debra told us about a young boy in their music camp. A camp where 250 children learn to play music each year.

This little guy was shy. Afraid. Lacked self-confidence.

Over time, as Salvation Army officers mentored this little guy on the trumpet, he started coming out of his shell. He felt less afraid. He found a talent to share with the world. He gained confidence.
And then, one day, he got up in front of an audience at the Corps and played that trumpet for everyone. He started looking up.
The work of The Salvation Army is about our Lord lifting up heads. It’s about building skills and developing God-given talents in people so that they see themselves as God sees them. Worthy. Redeemed. Valuable – whether they’re homeless, unemployed, hungry or spiritually impoverished.

But you, O LORD, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head. – Psalm 3:3
For more on Central Kentucky’s work lifting heads, click here.
***Marcia Larson is a Board Member of The Salvation Army & The Micah Global Foundation. She received her B.A. from Vanderbilt and M.A. in French / Art History (NYU) and Public Policy (Texas A&M). She enjoys being a Twitter coach at Dow Jones / The Wall Street Journal. She currently resides in New York City. Her favorite verse is Micah 6:8.


A Huge Thanks to Target from Students in Oklahoma & Arkansas

In partnership with The Salvation Army, Target is providing a memorable back-to-school shopping experience that equips children in need with all the essentials for a successful academic year. And the campaign, which awarded 12,000 children, affiliated with Salvation Army youth programs, with $80 gift cards to shop for clothing and supplies with the help of a designated chaperon, is doing more than filling backpacks.

Our back-to-school program with Target provides emotional encouragement for families in need. These kids are getting jazzed for the school year ahead while parents are relieved of the rising costs associated with the annual shopping tradition.

Want to support The Salvation Army’s back-to-school programs? Find your local Salvation Army here. 
With the help of volunteers, students from Norman, OK checked off their teacher’s lists by picking out supplies – and their favorite clothes – courtesy of Target’s generosity.

Check out this touching video from The Salvation Army Arkansas-Oklahoma Division, and help us say “Thank You” to Target by ‘Liking’ and commenting on their Facebook page (

Transitional Living Program Equips Employed, Homeless Men With Tools for Self-Sufficiency

Unveiling the new Men’s Transitional Housing Center in Hickory, NC on July 12, which will serve 11 employed but homeless men in need. Photo:

There can be so many reasons for becoming homeless, especially during these tough economic times. Whether you’ve been evicted, deal with substance abuse, face a domestic break-up or any other type of crisis, The Salvation Army is there to lend a helping hand.

The Salvation Army’s Transitional Housing Program is designed for homeless and low-income families and individuals who need help regaining their independence by the power of healing and learning the life skills they need to be successful.  Housing is provided on a temporary basis for varying amounts of time to help individuals get back on their feet.

In addition to food and shelter, most centers provide a variety of educational, health care, counseling, and vocational services to homeless and destitute individuals and families. All programs vary depending on the needs of the community.

One example of this program is our new transitional housing facility that recently opened in Hickory, N.C. This building will provide shelter and services for 11 men for up to two years, who are employed, yet homeless. This particular program is designed to fight the cycle of homelessness by providing these men with the necessary tools they need in order to become self –sufficient through shelter, education and spiritual healing. Skills classes include topics such as budget counseling, substance abuse education, job training, and GED courses. The ultimate goal is for each man to leave the center with enough money for a deposit a permanent residence or a financial cushion.

Each year, The Salvation Army provides more than 10 million nights of shelter to those in need thanks to our generous supporters. We are always seeking volunteers to share life experience skills and mentor clients. To lend your skills to The Salvation Army, click here or visit for a list of Salvation Army opportunities in your area.

Salvation Army programs vary with local needs. For information on specific programs and locations, contact your local Salvation Army Corps Community Center by doing a zip code search in our website’s Location field.


Work Program Helps Rebuild Lives and Landscapes


The Salvation Army in Dallas, TX recently launched a new commercial landscape management business to help companies keep their facilities looking sharp while also providing jobs, training, counseling and income for people who would otherwise by unemployed.

The Socially Responsible Landscape Management Company has two crews of 12 workers, all of who live at The Salvation Army homeless shelter until they save enough money to live on their own, capable of doing just about everything from lawn mowing to sprinkler installation and repair.

While each employee is trained by a professional lawn care supervisor (you’ll be amazed at what they can do!), the goal of the program is to help these individuals gain experience and self-sufficiency so they can move onto other higher paying opportunities within the lawn care industry.

The entire project was funded by donations from local advisory board members, who helped purchase equipment and acquire knowledgeable management. The company is working to add more crewmembers, in hopes of providing brighter futures for a greater number of homeless individuals in Dallas.

Services include law mowing, edging, weed removal, tree trimming and planting, flower bed maintenance, mulching, sodding, seeding, shrub pruning, pre-emergent fire ant treatment, and sprinkler installation and repair.

Rebuild your landscape and the lives of those in need by calling 214.637.8215 for a free estimate.  All profits help fund The Salvation Army’s critical social service programs.
Read more in the Dallas Business Journal. 


U.S. Army Soldier Serves Oklahoma Survivors Alongside Salvation Army

Posted by Megan on Wednesday, June 12, 2013 · Leave a Comment 

The following was contributed by Krachel Greenwood, E-Communications Manager for The Salvation Army Wisconsin and Upper Michigan Divisional Headquarters. Krachel has been serving with The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams on the ground in Oklahoma since the disaster struck. 

From the client side of the desk, Gregory Von-Dollen is just another smiling face sitting at the Multi-Agency Resource Center located at Westmoore High School in Moore, Oklahoma.

Von-Dollen, an Oklahoma native, was out of state when tornadoes touched down in May. But he knew he had to help.

“The whole purpose was for me to come out and help my community. Since being wounded it has become my sense of duty to return that service the community has given me,” Von-Dollen explains.

In October of 2009 Von-Dollen joined the United States Army. Thirteen months later he was involved in a motorcycle accident which severely injured his left leg. He broke his hip, received 2-3 fractions in his femur and 25+ breaks in his tibia. He underwent two years of limb salvage, but in June of 2012 an amputation was performed, due to building blood clots in his leg.

Von-Dollen prevailed. He has stayed active duty with the United States Army and is currently receiving treatment at WTB (Warrior Transition Battallion), Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas. Specialist Von-Dollen knows what it means to be Army Strong; he also knows what it means to be Oklahoma Strong.

“People don’t understand the resiliency Oklahoma has – don’t seem to understand the spirit people here have,” he explains.

When Von-Dollen’s leg was amputated he was pushed to get back in the saddle.

“I’ve been skydiving, rock climbing, fishing, bowling, SCUBA diving and gone on multiple hunting trips,” he says. He’s also taken up hand cycling – and logged his longest ride at 25 miles.

For those stopping by Spc. Von-Dollen’s spot at The Salvation Army’s table, a genuine smile is a welcomed one.

“A lot of people are still at the point of not wanting to share. One woman wasn’t home but her son was. He dove into a small closet and after the tornado passed by a neighbor stopped by and heard him screaming. The neighbor broke through the sheetrock and helped him out,” he says.

Von-Dollen plans to volunteer with The Salvation Army for four days. He looks forward to finishing his leave by spending time with family before returning to Texas.