Polaris, Inc. aids The Salvation Army’s disaster response through vehicle donation
By: Brad Rowland
With the goal to ensure delivering of emergency supplies to remote areas of need, The Salvation Army and Polaris, Inc. enjoy a fruitful partnership. Within the last decade, Polaris has aided The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts with nearly $1 million in donation of off-road vehicles and, within the Southern Territory, donations of utility terrain vehicles (UTVs) prove to be pivotal.
“The donation of Polaris UTVs has made a tremendous impact, supporting the disaster work of The Salvation Army,” said Tyra Gore, assistant territorial disaster coordinator. “The Salvation Army relies on the generosity of donors such as Polaris and we are grateful for their continued support.”
The Polaris company’s most recent gift includes five new Ranger UTVs and ten power generators. The new UTVs have been assigned to Florida, replacing three units the Southern Territory sent to the Bahamas during Hurricane Dorian, in addition to Georgia and Texas, while the generators will be utilized for winter storm relief. This is not the first time Polaris has stepped in to support The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts. Since Hurricane Sandy in 2012, Polaris has donated 77 vehicles nationally.
“Polaris has long supported the charitable efforts of The Salvation Army, and we are proud that our donations of off-road vehicles, generators and funds have assisted in serving affected communities,” said Lucy Clark Dougherty, President, Polaris Foundation and SVP, General Counsel, “We are looking forward to continued partnership and service to disaster-stricken communities.”
UTVs are commonly used to haul equipment and supplies in locations that make using a truck either impractical or impossible. Many disaster survivors are stranded in their homes due to impassible roads, and the ability to deploy UTVs is helpful in relief efforts.
“The Polaris UTVs enables disaster workers to reach and respond to the disaster survivors quickly and provide essential supplies, meals & beverages, clean-up kits, hygiene kits, emotional & spiritual care, and other needed services,” Gore said. “They are also useful at disaster command posts and field kitchens for moving and transporting large amounts of product around from one site location to another site.”
Polaris UTVs are also helpful with moving products, tools, and other maintenance supplies during day-to-day operations in non-disaster times. The vehicles help to save time, eventually helping to complete more tasks in a timely manner and aiding in The Salvation Army’s desire to stay prepared.
“In the last decade, we’ve endured everything from hurricanes and earthquakes to tornadoes and wildfires,” said Commissioner Kenneth Hodder, national commander. “Now, we’re battling these natural disasters on top of a raging pandemic. We can’t thank our partners like Polaris enough for the aid they provide to help immediate and long-term recovery needs. Not only does it enable us to assist communities as they rebuild during long-term recovery processes, but it also inspires hope.”