Dallas, Texas (August 30, 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 71 mobile feeding units to Texas. Twenty-nine additional units are on standby to support the state of Louisiana if Harvey’s rains cause severe flooding there and additional feeding units are on standby across the country to help if needed. Salvation Army trained disaster workers are being deployed to the stricken area from across the United States and Canada.
The Incident Command Team deployed from Florida to Texas arrived in Houston mid-morning Tuesday and quickly established an Incident Command Center at the Northwest Corps. In addition to the eight-person leadership team, two shower trailers also arrived from Florida, each containing eight individual shower stalls. These units are stationed at the Matzke Elementary school that is currently housing 500 evacuees. Two mobile bunk houses are also in place and ready to be deployed.
The Salvation Army is providing shelter and emergency services to displaced individuals and families at several facilities across the city:
- Pasadena Corps – housing 60 people on Tuesday, 140 less than on Monday.
- Conroe Corps – providing shelter.
- Harbor Light/Red Shield Lodge – sheltering close to 250 evacuees, exceeding the normal capacity by 175 people. Typically limited to only a men’s shelter, exceptions have been made to house families from the neighborhood needing a place to stay. In addition to a dry, safe place to sleep, storm survivors are provided with clean clothes and hygiene kits.
- International Corps continues to serve as a distribution center providing 35 blankets, 268 cases of water and 450 meals, snacks and drinks.
- The Aldine/Westfield location only became accessible on Tuesday and mobile kitchen service started this evening.
- Houston Temple – unsafe water levels remain in the area and therefore no service is taking place.
- Houston Adult Rehabilitation Center continues to house 150 men as part of The Salvation Army’s free 180-day rehabilitation program.
- Five mobile kitchens were in operation on Tuesday with an additional six units arriving from Kentucky and Tennessee on Tuesday evening.
CORPUS CHRISTI AREA:
In the Corpus Christi/Coastal Bend area, feeding operations expanded Tuesday with 11 mobile kitchens serving in the cities of Rockport, Port Aransas, Aransas Pass, Ingleside, Portland and North Corpus Christi. Many of these communities have been without power since Hurricane Harvey made landfall on Saturday and several cities remain without running water.
The Divisional Commanders of The Salvation Army Texas Division, Lt. Colonels Ronnie & Sharon Raymer, visited operations in Rockport today, the first day of mobile kitchen service in this community. A Rockport resident approached The Salvation Army mobile kitchen crew while they were setting up to provide lunch and with tears filling his eyes said, “I knew you would come.” After seeing first-hand the devastation caused by the storm, Lt. Colonel Ronnie Raymer said, “The need is great here in Rockport and indeed all along the Texas coastline. We hope to send multiple feeding units in the coming days to support the residents of this hurting community who have already been through so much and lost a great deal. Our love and prayers go out to each of them.”
DALLAS FORT WORTH:
The shelter at the Dallas Convention Center opened this morning and by 6:00 PM housed a little more than 200 evacuees. With many roads still impassable in Houston that number is expected to increase rapidly as roads re-open and buses currently on standby make their way to Dallas. The Salvation Army of Dallas Fort Worth provided meals for those staying in the shelter along with staff and volunteers.
An email was received by staff at The Salvation Army Divisional Headquarters in Dallas stating, “Please send food trucks to Angleton, Brazoria County Fairgrounds. We have no food or supplies. Thank you.” This message was relayed to Lt. Juan Gomez, Salvation Army Officer in Freeport on Tuesday at 6:35 PM. At 6:45 PM Lt. Gomez responded, “Food is on its way to the fairgrounds.” We are so grateful for the prompt, effective and compassionate service of The Salvation Army response teams throughout Texas.
A shelter opened at The Salvation Army in Waco on Tuesday. The Kerrville team continues to serve meals at two local evacuation shelters while the Center of Hope in Temple is operating an emergency shelter.
Additional units are staged in San Antonio and Dallas preparing for deployment as areas become accessible.
As of Tuesday evening, August 29, 18,483 meals, 17,204 snacks, and 16,640 drinks have been provided.
To make a financial donation to support the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts please go to www.helpsalvationarmy.org, call 1-800- SAL-ARMY, text STORM to 51555.
For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx. To access photo and video resources related to The Salvation Army Hurricane Harvey relief efforts please go to www.salvationarmysouth.org/harvey.
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. 82 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.