‘Salvation Army USS Events’ app set to debut for territorial congress
By: Brad Rowland
Searching for Salvation Army content in the iOS or Android app store would yield numerous returns, with commands from around the world represented in the results. In 2020, though, a new entrant arrived with the creation of an app titled “Salvation Army USS Events,” with the Call to Mission Southern Territorial Congress serving as the event that will launch the product.
The territorial congress, taking place June 5-7, will be the first event chronicled by the app, but it was designed with the capability to be used for all territorial events, with potential expansion to divisional gatherings. In short, it brings the experience of a full, deep-dive program booklet and places it on one’s cellular device, delivering a bevy of information in highly accessible form.
“It can be really engaging for younger adults, or really anyone, to be able to dive into everything that an event has to offer, right on their phone,” said Dave Haas, territorial ministry toolkit and events app manager. “It provides the ability to connect with others in a social setting, all while also bringing the informational components that bring their own functionality. I think it will be very cool for any event in its own way.”
The app is available now, though it won’t take on its full form until closer to the congress’s arrival. It will feature basic information, ranging from schedule information to speaker biographies and location maps. The app also brings social interactive capability, with the ability to connect with other attendees through messaging and information sharing. In addition, the capability exists to send push notifications to any app user, bringing a dynamic approach that allows for reminders and real-time insight.
Though the current design centers on the Call to Mission congress, there is great versatility in the events app, with organizers of future events able to mold its features to the needs of a specific assembly.
“The app can be as bare-bones as an event organizer would want with just schedules and basic information,” Haas said. “Or on the flip side, it can be very creative and expansive if the event calls for it. There are always some limitations, but just about everything that we’ve thought of for the congress has been able to be achieved within the app. We’re excited about the potential for the future.”
Though it should be noted that attendees must register separately for the congress, even after downloading the app, its capabilities are wide-ranging, and individuals can prepare for the congress well before arriving.
“The app really allows people to dig in and personalize their experience, all while engaging with the broader community in that public setting,” said Haas. “Almost everybody’s got a phone. Everybody’s digital today. We can be environmentally friendly by using this and avoiding extensive printing but, in addition, we can put the information in everyone’s hands and update things instantly throughout the process. It’s modern, but it’s also simple and it gives us the ability to let people mold the experience to what they want. We think that’s important.”