The Salvation Army Responds to Active Shooter Incident in Santa Fe, TX

Galveston, Texas (May 18, 2018) – This morning, in response to an active shooter incident in Santa Fe, TX, The Salvation Army Galveston County immediately deployed a mobile kitchen to Santa Fe High School.  The Salvation Army is on site providing water and food, and emotional and spiritual care to first responders. “Our hearts go out to all those who are suffering through this tragedy and we are here to help in any way we can,” said Captain Patrick Jones, Commanding Officer of The Salvation Army Galveston County.

The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services team in San Antonio is on standby and prepared to respond as needed. Four emotional and spiritual care (ESC) personal have been requested from Greater Houston Area Command to aid the hurting community, provide comfort and if needed, prayer.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: 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. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go towww.SalvationArmyUSA.org or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.

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Salvation Army Opens DMG Foods, Its First-Ever Supermarket

Nearly a quarter of the residents of Baltimore lack adequate access to healthy food. For many, the nearest grocery stores are minimarts with limited produce. And lower incomes affect the ability of people to afford healthier food, according to a study by Johns Hopkins that looked at the regions of the city where the need for more healthy food options is the greatest.

While hunger and access to good food is not a new problem for the city, a longtime religious charity is trying something new to tackle it: The Salvation Army recently opened its first nonprofit supermarket in the country in East Baltimore.

Lawrence Pollard and his wife, Faith, are shopping at the Salvation Army grocery for the first time. The store is called DMG Foods, which stands for the Salvation Army’s motto, “Doing the Most Good.”

Pollard looks around and seems impressed. “So far, so good. It’s clean place,” he says.

The 7,000-square-foot space looks like your average supermarket. The couple admires the stacks of fresh-looking asparagus, juicy Gala apples and a variety of lettuce. Lawrence clutches a paper with the store’s weekly deal.

“I see a couple of deals already,” he says, “especially on the fruits and the salads.”

Now, many supermarkets brag about having the lowest prices, but we checked. The milk, eggs, butter and canned tuna at DMG are 50 cents to $3 cheaper than at the nearest chain grocery.

In addition to offering the usual supermarket experience, DMG Foods also offers nutritional guidance, shopping education, workforce development training, and meal planning.

While the store caters to beneficiaries of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Maj. Gene Hogg, the Salvation Army’s central Maryland commander, says anyone can shop here.

“Our business is not really selling food,” he says. “What we’re in the business of doing is helping and loving people. And the qualifications to shop here is to walk in the door.”

The Salvation Army decided to go into the food business because, Hogg says, it found a niche where many chain supermarkets stores could not survive.

Hogg says the organization did research around what it could do to “sustain a community, rather than entering into it on an as-need basis.”

“This is where we live; this is where we minister,” says Hogg. “Moving into that space, I think we can make a viable impact into the community.”

The DMG store has some help making products available to its customers. Some of the nonperishable food is donated by the Maryland Food Bank, while produce is bought from a large distributor that sells it to DMG at a steep discount. Since the store opened a couple of weeks ago, Hogg says, business so far is good.

He says the goal is to get to 300 customers in one day. To entice more customers each week, the store offers free items for SNAP beneficiaries. This week, it is giving away 10-pound bags of frozen chicken.

The store is an experiment. Hogg says if it makes enough money beyond expenses, proceeds can go to the Salvation Army’s home for survivors of human trafficking. “So not only are you just shopping and meeting your needs for your household, but in the end you could be actually helping someone who could be rescued from human trafficking.”

Over at the cash register, the Pollards are ready to check out. They leave the store clutching three full grocery bags. They’ve spent only about $17.

If the store is successful in attracting enough customers, Hogg says the Salvation Army may be able to expand to other parts of Baltimore. And if that works out, it hopes to open in more areas across the country.

The Salvation Army has high hopes that the Baltimore DMG store will succeed. Hogg says DMG is not just a motto — it’s a promise.

 

Credit: www.npr.org

SALVATION ARMY RESPONDING IN THE AFTERMATH OF BROWARD COUNTY, FLORIDA SCHOOL SHOOTINGS

Tampa, Florida: In the aftermath of the tragic shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, two Salvation Army mobile feeding units were dispatched to the scene.  The mobile feeding unit from Ft. Lauderdale with Major Albert Cancia,  the Ft Lauderdale Corps officer on board, and the West Palm Beach mobile unit with Major Pierre Smith, the Palm Beach Area Commander have been serving first responders at the scene. In addition, Major Keath Biggers the Ft. Lauderdale Area Commander has been at the Broward County Emergency Management Center working with officials to determine what needs can be met by The Salvation Army. In addition to providing hydration needs, The Salvation Army workers are able to provide spiritual and emotional care to both first responders and those who have been affected by this tragic event.

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Monsoon causes Nationwide Flooding Crisis in Myanmar

monsoon myanmarSince Myanmar’s monsoon season commenced in early June, almost 1 million individuals have been affected by widespread flooding – compounded by Cyclone Komen –  in 12 of the 14 states throughout the nation. Thought to be the worst flooding in years, aproximately one hundred people have died and 1.2 million acres of rice fields have been destroyed.

The Salvation Army is working alongside authorities and nongovernment organizations (NGO) to provide relief to the affected communities in the form of meals, water, and shelter. Infrastructure remains point of concern as roads and bridges have been destroyed, and in some instances, swept away by the flooding. Many Salvation Army buildings and amenities are housing those that have been displaced  from their homes. Long-term relief efforts will revolve around funding and redevelopment of homes, bogs, and wells.

With a one hundred-year presence in Myanmar, The Salvation Army will continue serving these communities long after the catastrophe is over.

The Salvation Army depends upon financial donations to fulfill the distinctive, urgent needs of communities in disaster, such as those within Myanmar. To help worldwide disaster relief efforts of The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO), please go to https://give.salvationarmyusa.org/SAWSO and select “Disaster Relief & Reconstruction”.

About The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO)

SAWSO is committed to working hand-in-hand with local communities to help people who face challenges every day in countries around the globe. Created in 1977 as an independent 501(c) (3) to support the ministry of The Salvation Army, SAWSO has been strengthening global communities in need for nearly 38 years. SAWSO supports the Army’s impressive global footprint in 127 countries, developing long-term community-driven solutions to issues in the areas of:

· Community Health & HIV Prevention
· Livelihood & Empowerment 
· Anti-human Trafficking
· Disaster Relief & Recovery
· Education

To learn more, go to www.SAWSO.org.

The Salvation Army is committed to utilize philanthropic gifts in the manner donors desire. Occasionally, conditions in the field may alter relief activities. If this occurs, The Salvation Army will redirect funds to our International relief efforts in the area.

Hands Across Texas – Hug Lady

Elizabeth Laird, Fort Hood’s Official “Hug Lady”

By: Leslie Galban

Twelve years and counting, Salvation Army volunteer Elizabeth Laird, the “Hug Lady” of Fort Hood, has been hugging every soldier being deployed or returning home from duty.

Elizabeth and her husband, Ray, moved to Texas more than 40 years ago. They became long-time volunteers for The Salvation Army serving as bell ringers, disaster relief workers, and actively supported their local Salvation Army unit in Copperas Cove.

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In 2003, Elizabeth received a phone call from the commanding officer of The Salvation Army Killeen Corps asking for help greeting soldiers at Fort Hood, the largest active duty armored post in the United States Armed Services. Being a veteran of the US Air Force, Elizabeth knew this was important and something she and her husband wanted to be part of.  The couple joined other Salvation Army volunteers sending off soldiers with a smile and a hug along with stationery and postage to send letters to their loved ones while deployed.  So began years of dedicated service to thousands of soldiers at Fort Hood, earning Elizabeth the affectionate nickname, the “Hug Lady.”

Ray passed away suddenly in January of 2008 and despite her grief Elizabeth continued her faithful service to the soldiers, without her husband of 36 years. “Even in grief, when you help others, it helps you,” explained Elizabeth. “The hug is important to the soldiers and it brings a smile to their face.”

“As they leave, I tell them about God’s protection in the 91st Psalm,” she added. “When I hug them, I tell them ‘I will be here when you get back’.”

Elizabeth, 82, does not consider herself selfless or extraordinary. “Volunteering and encouraging others is what you are supposed to do. That is what The Salvation Army does; where there is a need, the Army is there to meet it,” she said. “People might recognize me as the Hug Lady, but I don’t want people to see me, I want them to see Jesus.”

Salvation Army Neediest Families supporters bring ‘smiles, joy and comfort’ to Coastal Alabama families in need

Pope says Salvationists and Catholics meet at peripheries of society

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History was made with the first private audience in the Vatican with Pope Francis and the General of The Salvation Army.

General André Cox met the Pope who said that theological differences do not impede the witness of a shared love of God and neighbor. He also spoke of his first encounter, as a 4 year old, with Salvation Army Officers which, he said, stirred in him a sense of ecumenical outreach beyond the teachings of the Catholic Church in that era.

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Read the full article here

Dillard’s Stores and The Salvation Army Drive to Do Good

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It’s no secret that it has become unseasonably cold for many parts of The United States. And with the temperatures continuing to drop, it’s time to bundle up.

This year, as you transition to your warmer wardrobe, consider freeing up some space in those cluttered closets and drawers by donating any jackets and coats you no longer wear to help support families who cannot afford proper winter attire.
Thanks to the generosity of Dillard’s Department Stores, The Salvation Army is helping to fill this need. This Saturday, November 22, select Dillard’s locations will host a one-day coat drive benefiting The Salvation Amy- and they need your help.

Visit one of the 86 participating stores this weekend and bring in any gently used coats and receive a token of appreciation from Dillard’s.
Just by clearing out your closet, you can make a huge difference in someone’s life.

If there is not a Dillard’s in your area, you can always donate gently used or new coats to your local Salvation Army Family Store. Just visit www.satruck.org and find the closet location near you.
A special thank you to Dillard’s for their generosity and support of The Salvation Army’s mission to Do The Most Good!
Dillard’s,The Salvation Amy, coat drive