Selena Gomez to Kick Off Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign

Selena-Gomez

We are thrilled to announce that Selena Gomez will return to her hometown of Dallas, TX to kick off The Salvation Army’s 123rd annual Red Kettle Campaign with a musical performance during halftime of the Dallas Cowboys game on Thanksgiving Day.

In its 17th year, the Red Kettle Kick Off show – hosted annually by the Dallas Cowboys – will launch yet another great season of giving. Last year, the American public donated a record $148.7 million to The Salvation Army’s red kettles, allowing the organization to serve millions of Americans with food, shelter, clothing, financial assistance and toys for children.

“Giving back is so important, and I am looking forward to kicking off the iconic Red Kettle Campaign and getting those bells ringing across the nation to help families and children in need,” said Gomez.

In further support of the campaign, the actress and multi-platinum recording artist is encouraging fans to donate to her own Online Red Kettle (www.onlineredkettle.org/selenagomez).

Fans can join Selena’s fundraising team by clicking here. Eight very lucky fundraisers will have the chance to connect with the singer through a Google hangout later in the season.

We hope you’ll tune in at 4:30 PM (ET) on November 28 for the Thanksgiving Day game (Dallas Cowboys vs. Oakland Raiders!) and Red Kettle Kick-Off, airing live on FOX!
Read the official press release.
 
selenagomez.com
 

Christmas Film, “Silver Bells” Highlights the Good Work of Salvation Army

Ready or not, Christmas is already in the air. Before you know it, you’ll be surrounded by a mound of Halloween candy and November will be on its way out.

But there’s plenty of time to get in the spirit and soak it all up!  Whip up some hot chocolate, snuggle up with the family and turn on Silver Bells, a Pure Flix Entertainment production that tells the touching story about a man and his journey to discover the true meaning of Christmas.

Bruce Boxleitner plays an ambitious businessman who gets in a scuffle that gets him sentenced to community service — manning a red kettle and ringing bells for The Salvation Army for the rest of the Christmas season.

At first he finds this humiliating, and in his self-pity determines to be the world’s worst bell ringer, but as he encounters the people behind the kettle, his life — and especially his relationship with his son — is changed by something as simple as ringing a bell.
We’re delighted The Salvation Army plays a pivotal role throughout the film as the family volunteers with the organization in various ways. With a great cast including Bruce Boxleitner, Kevin Downes , and Antonio Fargas , Silver Bells is a heartwarming reminder to reflect on the true message of Christmas and to celebrate love, faith and hope.

Catch the nationwide broadcast on UPTV on Saturday, November 30. Or, check it out on DVD and Blu-Ray today.
Is it too early to say “Merry Christmas”?
***

Visit https://www.facebook.com/PureFlix to learn more. You can also join in the conversation with #SilverBells on Twitter and Facebook

Hurricane Sandy: Signs of Recovery Continue One Year Later

One year ago, Hurricane Sandy pummeled the East Coast following a four-day northern trek, creating the deadliest and most destructive hurricane of the 2012 season. Affecting 24 states, the storm’s force shattered communities, destroyed homes and businesses, shut down power for millions, and took over 100 lives.
A week before the strike, Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) crews of The Salvation Army were ramping up response efforts by feeding evacuees and developing search and rescue teams.
“We discovered then that our response needed to be more than the hot dog and a cup of coffee,” says Brenda Beavers, State Director of Human Resources for The Salvation Army’s New Jersey Division.
546856_10151255800086591_999099548_n
In the immediate aftermath of the storm, EDS canteens were dispatched to the hardest hit areas up and down the coast. With the help of staff and volunteers, meals, drinks, clothing, blankets and toiletries were distributed to victims and first responders. As part of a long-term recovery effort, the Army provided gift cards and in-kind products such as heaters, food, clothing, toys, diapers, linens, boots, and facemasks.
People had lost their homes, their memories, and things you simply can’t replace.

But one year later, signs of recovery remain as residents along the Coast work to rebuild their lives through service organizations like The Salvation Army.
“The goal of our Disaster Case Management process is to provide support, advocacy and connect residents with as many possible resources available to them without adding additional work and confusion to their already challenging process,” says Brenda Downing, Director of Social Services at The Salvation Army Southern New England.

These little helpers served with big smiles and brought joy to survivors in Connecticut.

Restoring normalcy in the lives of survivors is the Army’s primary objective.
With the support of donors and partnering organizations, affected individuals and families are being met with financial assistance, rebuilding and repair costs, and in-depth case management to address unmet needs.
Homeowners like Ellen Levitsky are grateful for the support of The Salvation Army, which helped clean up her storm-ravaged home in Freeport, New York.
“I never thought anyone would come to help,” Levitsky said. “I feel like I should be pinched. I’m so thankful for the help that The Salvation Army has provided, and how quickly.”

Kelly Osbourne assisting recovery efforts on Staten Island, NY.

But perhaps more importantly, survivors are finding comfort in the emotional and spiritual care offered through recovery centers and emotional support groups of The Salvation Army in New York and New Jersey.
“A lot of people have been hurting,” says Bram Applin, Community Relations Director for the New Jersey Division. “They are asking, ‘why did this happen?’ Being able to simply pray with someone, hug someone, to be able to show the love of Christ in the little things – it’s a privilege.”
***
The Salvation Army is the first to arrive and the last to leave. Americans showed an outpouring of love and support for their East Coast neighbors in need, and their financial contributions are being used to provide ongoing assistance in all communities impacted by this disaster.

971774_643738862320405_1735600392_n

Help Keep a Child Warm this Winter, by Donating a Coat

coats-for-kids

Fall is now in full effect and with winter slowly creeping around the corner, many are starting to prepare to bundle up.

This year, as you transition to warmer clothing, consider decluttering   those bulky winter coats your children no longer wear, and help The Salvation Army keep underprivileged children warm as the temps continue to decline.  Just imagine that feeling of opening your coat closet and actually placing your swiffer in with ease rather than dealing with the daily battle for room with those space eating coats.  And the cherry on top-it’s for a great cause!

The Salvation Army’s annual Coats for Kids program is in full swing and locations nationwide are calling for donations of winter coats and jackets for families that cannot afford proper winter attire.
Just by clearing out your closet, you can make a huge difference in a child’s life.

All new or gently used coats can be taken to one of the many Salvation Army ‘Coats for Kids’ collection drives in various communities across the country. To find a participating Salvation Army near you, enter your zip code here.
If there is not a drive happening 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 or check out the easy-to-use Salvation Army Family Store App, available on the App Store and Google play, where you can schedule a pickup, find locations and get rewards.
As always, The Salvation Army is grateful for your donations and support!

Posted by Jackie on Tuesday, October 8, 2013 · Leave a Comment

Former homeless teen recieves free car for being a “Spark of Hope”

Screen Shot 2013-09-30 at 8.06.14 AM

Brittnie Pemberton was just nine years old when she and her mother were homeless and living at The Salvation Army’s Door of Hope. Her father, sought help for substance abuse through The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Program (ARC). Throughout this trying time, this young lady never lost hope that her dreams would come true.
And on Tuesday afternoon, one did.

While living at the shelter, Brittnie participated in a project called “Pictures of Hope,” where she was asked to take pictures of her hopes and dreams, one of which included a snap shot of San Diego State University. That dream became a reality a few years ago when a donor endowed a four year scholarship for Brittnie. Also included in this list was a wish to one day get a car.
Brittnie, now 16, was shocked when Chevrolet surprised the teen by unveiling a brand new car.

The 2014 Chevrolet Spark was given to Brittnie for being a “Spark of Hope” for America’s youth. She is an incredible example of hard work and great compassion as she splits her time between school and volunteering at the homeless shelter where she mentors children who are currently going through the same thing she did. Her proud parents are back on their feet and are serving as cadets in The Salvation Army.

At the presentation this week, she was led to believe she was there to be interviewed about her family’s past and their experience living in The Salvation Army’s homeless shelter. She had no idea what was in store for her.

see more here

Posted by Jackie on Friday, September 27, 2013 ·

You Can Help The Salvation Army battle Food Insecurity

food insecurity

Social media was abuzz yesterday with posts about the first day of school; excited parents posting pictures of their kids standing ready for the bus, and students expressing excitement or dread about the start of a new academic year. But one topic you likely won’t hear your friends talking about on social media is food insecurity, a rising concern for families struggling in the Great Recession, as well as schools.

In 2011, according to Feeding America, 50.1 million Americans lived in food insecure households, 33.5 million adults and 16.7 million children.

And the numbers are rising. Between 2007 – 2011, the percentage of U.S. households with food-insecure children increased from 8.3 to 10 percent, according to a report from USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS).

Feeding America also tells us that children from food insecure households– where parents struggle to meet basic food needs –  are at a disadvantage in their academic development compared to other students, which ultimately makes it difficult for them to achieve the same level of development as their fellow food secure peers.

But here’s the good news: The Salvation Army is dedicated to helping families meet this basic need, and supporting healthy children in the classroom. One way we do this is through your donations to our food pantries, which provide groceries for individuals and families in need and are essential to battling food insecurity.

I’ve noted several news stories as of late about Salvation Army branches seeking food donations from their communities. At many locations, the pantry supply is running critically low, likely due to the time of year; people are enjoying the end of summer and gearing up for the busy months ahead rather than donating.

The Salvation Army Food Pantry in Panama City is just one example where food is in short supply. This location feeds up to 15 families daily through donations. If you live in Panama City, click here to learn how you can donate today.
Your support is needed to ensure that our shelves are stocked so we can meet those needs.

To donate nonperishable foods to your local Salvation Army food pantry, check out our main website for a list of locations near you:  www.SalvationArmyUSA.org.
Or, click here for other ways to show your support. In 2011 alone, we served almost 60 million meals to individuals and families in need.

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: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Salvation-Army-of-Hickory/193314167414214

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 www.volunteermatch.org 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.

The Salvation Army Serves 700 Meals as Case Management Begins in West, Texas

The Salvation Army Disaster ServicesDallas, TX (April 23, 2013) – The newly established Joint Assistance Center (JAC) was a hive of activity on Monday as returning West residents registered for assistance and case work with a number of agencies including The Salvation Army.

The Disaster Canteen (mobile kitchen) from The Salvation Army in Abilene was stationed at the JAC, located at 2547 Jerry Mashek Drive in West, serving meals and refreshments throughout the day. Other units were again located at the Command Center and Community Center, with one canteen roving through the most affected neighborhoods.

Social Services staff from The Salvation Army in Waco met with a steady stream of people seeking assistance at the JAC, which will be open from 8:30 AM-7:00 PM, Monday-Friday. Lisa Wood, who has lived in West for five years with her husband and elderly mother, Shirley Reed, patiently waited in line to meet with a case manager on Monday morning. “We gathered what we could and evacuated immediately after the explosion on Wednesday night,” she explained. We’ve been staying in a hotel in Waco and my husband finally got to see the house for the first time this morning. The windows are all blown out but it’s still standing,” said Lisa, smiling. “We are so grateful that you are here to help.”

Monday saw a significant increase in the number of residents served as many returned to West, Texas for the first time since being evacuated. The Salvation Army has provided 3,645 meals, 3,205 drinks, and 1,743 snacks, in the 5 days since the explosion.

Volunteers are needed at The Salvation Army warehouse, located at 101 Apron Rd in Waco. The warehouse, open each day from 8:00 AM-7:00 PM, has been designated as the main donation collection and distribution site in the area. There has been an incredible outpouring of support by fellow Texans and beyond for the community of West, and as a result The Salvation Army is not able to accept any additional in-kind donations. If you would like to volunteer at the warehouse, or for more information, please call (254) 379-2430.

Financial donations can be made in the following ways to support The Salvation Army’s ongoing response in West:
• MAIL – please send checks to The Salvation Army, PO Box 36607, Dallas, TX 75235
• PHONE at 1-800-SAL-ARMY
• ONLINE at www.salvationarmytexas.org

For more information about The Salvation Army’s disaster response effort, please go to www.Facebook.com/SalvationArmyTexas, www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org, or www.salvationarmytexas.org.

###

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 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. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.

Philip Burn
[email protected]

Salvation Army Responds to Sichuan Earthquake

Sichuan EarthquakeThe Salvation Army is responding after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit China’s Sichuan Province on Saturday 20 April. Latest reports show that at least 200 people lost their lives in the disaster, with more than 11,500 sustaining injuries and at least 1.5 million people being left homeless.

A Salvation Army team from its Sichuan Earthquake Reconstruction and Recovery Office headed towards the city of Ya-an – the epicentre of the quake – on Sunday. The city was initially cut off because of roads being torn apart or blocked by mudslides. Many rural communities are still impossible to reach.

Salvation Army staff contacted officials from the Lushan Township Earthquake Bureau and discovered that four townships – Longmen, Taiping, Shuangshi and Baosheng – were the worst hit. Most of the houses in the area are traditional small huts with green tile roofs. It appears that the few buildings to have survived the earthquake have been destroyed by aftershocks.

Currently, most of the victims are sheltering under self-made temporary tents, although many are having to survive without any shelter at all. Rain is making things worse, hindering the rescue work and worsening the living conditions of the survivors. There is urgent need across the region for tents, folding beds and food.

Salvation Army relief personnel are trying to purchase food items such as sausages and instant noodles. Having carried out initial assessments, Salvation Army teams are preparing to distribute food and folding beds.

 

Report by Envoy Simon Wong

social services

Salvation Army benefits greatly from Empty Bowls Luncheon


TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) – Polly Smith with The Salvation Army in Tupelo cooks breakfast, lunch and dinner there daily to feed 150 people or so.

Smith said, “I serve chicken dressing, greens, cabbage, barbecue, and anything just about.”

Smith uses food that’s been both donated and bought using donations.

Major Sue Dorman says fund raisers like the recent Empty Bowls Luncheon help keep their kitchen and other services going.

Dorman said, “Fifteen dollars can feed our lodge and a person staying overnight for a day.”

The lodge that’s made for 19 currently houses about 25 people nightly.

The food pantry shelves also are able to stay stocked through the annual Empty Bowls donation.

Dorman said, “Our founder, William Booth, had a little slogan: Soup, Soap and Salvation. You feed them, clean them, and then you can talk to them about Christ. Someone hungry is not going to listen to you.”

Back to the kitchen, that’s exactly why Polly Smith says she tries to make the best meal she can for those who depend on it daily.

Smith said, “I try my best to be in a good mood so they can be in a good mood. There are a lot of people who come in who are in a situation. They’re still happy and that makes me happy.”

Because of the generosity of so many during events like Empty Bowls, The Salvation Army says it’s working to make sure no one has to face a day hungry.

Reported by: Robert Byers
Source: WTVA.com