Salvationists, partners serve others as they battle the COVID-19 pandemic
By: David Ibata
The Salvation Army in the Southern Territory mobilizes to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. As families face sudden joblessness and financial crises, and vulnerable homeless residents seek shelter from the disease, corps and commands come up with creative ways to serve people in need and welcome stepped-up support from their community partners.
Augusta, Georgia: Sgt. April McCormick helms the grill at the Augusta Center of Hope. “You haven’t tasted grilled food till you’ve had April’s grilled food!” the Augusta Corps said in a Facebook posting. The Center of Hope has been sheltering men, women and children around the clock, providing three meals a day as well as snacks and entertainment. To assist, a local Holiday Inn Express and Suites donated toiletries and blankets; the Jamaica Way Restaurant provided a dinner of homemade burgers, hot dogs, jerk chicken and other foods; and TBonz Steakhouse donated cole slaw, fresh vegetables and other items.
Photo Credit: Augusta BBQ
Johnson City, Tennessee: Thanks to the Johnson City Morning Rotary and Tennessee Hills Distillery in nearby Jonesborough, Tennessee, the corps handed out 50 bottles of hand sanitizer while serving carry-out dinners at the Center of Hope – one bottle for each client. Tennessee Hills is using its reserves of vodka, rum and gin to produce individual, airplane-size bottles of sanitizer for local organizations to use in the fight against the COVID-19 virus.
Photo Credit: Johnson City 3
Cumberland, Maryland: Though the students of Bishop Walsh School in Cumberland, Maryland, are staying home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they remained committed to their service project. As part of their Lenten Challenge, students at the Catholic pre-K – 12th grade school led by Cara Bako organized a collection of food and toiletry items for charities. They delivered goods March 31 to The Salvation Army of Cumberland. The corps also thanked the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and Restaurant in LaVale, Maryland, for a donation of fresh produce; and Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls and Bread for a donation of bread.
Photo Credit: Cracker Barrel LaVale MD
Richmond, Virginia: The Salvation Army Central Virginia opened a temporary housing center for the homeless in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The center, located in The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club in the Church Hill neighborhood of Richmond, is for people who are already in the housing system and at a higher risk of contracting the coronavirus. The center can house 75 adults and will have clean bedding, shower facilities, heightened healthcare screenings and three daily meals.
Photo Credit: Richmond BCG homeless shelter
Owensboro, Kentucky: Matt Weafer, owner of Niko’s Bakery and Cafe, made hundreds of yeast rolls and bread for the mobile feeding ministry to serve alongside spaghetti to neighbors in need at The Salvation Army Corps in Owensboro.
Photo Credit: Matt Weafer Owensboro1