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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.

FlatRate Moving’s Upcycling Program Makes Moving More Meaningful with Salvation Army

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Moving homes can be a painful, yet motivating process of cleaning, organizing and simplifying your life. Attics are cleared, closets are cleaned and those weddings gifts you meant to return in 2007 are packed away for another dusty shelf at the new digs.

Sure, one may have every intention of donating unwanted items to someone who wants or needs them, but the actual process of doing so – especially in the middle of a huge life transition like moving – can be cumbersome.

That’s why we’re thrilled about a new partnership between The Salvation Army Eastern Territory and FlatRate Moving®, the innovative, nationwide leader in moving and storage.

The company is making moves mean more through a new Upcycling Program where customers will be offered two “upcycling” boxes, which can be ordered in advance of the big move, to be filled with unwanted toys, books, clothing and other small home goods. The boxes are then transported free of charge to Salvation Army Family Stores across New York City.

“Through this partnership, FlatRate Moving® will connect our clients to this respected organization and facilitate a culture of upcycling items from those who no longer want them to those who may need them,” said Sharone Ben-Harosh, Founder, FlatRate Moving.

FlatRate’s thoughtful partnership has the potential of delivering 36,000 boxes of gently used goods to The Salvation Army, a great benefit to our Adult Rehabilitation Centers which are funded by the Family Stores, and help provide drug and alcohol counseling to over 300,000 men and women each year.

To contact FlatRate Moving®, visit www.FlatRate.com.

Salvation Army Assisting Mass Feeding Efforts For Displaced Residents in Galena, AK

The Salvation Army is providing mass feeding operations to the community of Galena, AK as residents struggle to rebuild from one of the worst floods in the region in over a 100 years.
Spurred by a broken ice dam on May 28, Alaskans have called the Yukon River flooding their “Katrina” as 90 percent of its buildings were destroyed. Houses were toppled or otherwise uninhabitable and roads were gone, creating damage estimated to be above $10 million. Over 10 weeks after the disaster, displaced residents, who were previously housed at the boarding school’s dorms, were asked to move from one temporary shelter to another.

As winter approaches and the community struggles to rebuild from this event, The Salvation Army has joined forces with FEMA, AmeriCorps and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as part of a Unified Command Team to continue feeding operations for displaced residents at multiple sites throughout the next several weeks. Emergency Disaster Services crews and volunteers are also assisting with addressing the short- and long-term housing and clothing needs of people displaced in flooding.
Feeding team members from AmeriCorps and The Salvation Army.

Currently, Salvation Army teams are camped in tents outside the BLM kitchen. Additional EDS teams are scheduled to deploy from Anchorage on August 21 and September 4.

Monetary donations are the best way to support disaster relief efforts for Galena residents. The Salvation Army uses 100% of your disaster donations in support of local disaster relief operations. Please consider donating in the following ways: Online: http://donate.salvationarmyusa.org/alaska/flood-reliefBy Phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769)

In-kind donations are not currently being accepted. However, these gifts are vitally important to your local Salvation Army. To give items locally, visit www.SATruck.com or call 1-800-SA-TRUCK.

Raley’s Store Customers & Employees Donate $37,110.22 for Oklahoma Tornado Relief.

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Jennie Teel-Wolter, Community Relations Manager for Raley’s Family of Fine Stores presents the check to Major Lisa Dickinson, Salvation Army Divisional leader.

Raley’s Family of Fine Stores, a Sacramento-based grocer, announced Tuesday that $74,220.44 was raised by store customers and employees thanks to the Food for Families collection boxes that were designated for the Oklahoma Tornado Relief efforts during the month of June.
The donation, collected in only four weeks, has been split between The Salvation Army and the American Red Cross with each organization receiving a check for $37,110.22 to be used for Oklahoma relief efforts. Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams of The Salvation Army have been providing disaster relief to Oklahomans in need since the EF5 tornado swept through the region on May 20.

In July, The Salvation Army transitioned to long-term recovery operations for families and individuals who have been impacted by the storm, including everything from food and financial assistance to emotional care and rebuilding efforts. These efforts will continue for at least the next two years.

“This is another great example of the incredible generosity of this community,” said Major Bill Dickinson, Salvation Army Divisional Commander of the Del Oro Division. “The Salvation Army is truly grateful for efforts made by Raley’s and its customers and employees. This will go a long way to provide any assistance now and in the future for the families and individuals in Oklahoma.”

The Salvation Army gives thanks for the patrons and employees of Raley’s for making this contribution possible.

For the latest disaster services updates or ways to give, please visit: http://disaster.salvationarmyusa.org/

A Huge Thanks to Target from Students in Oklahoma & Arkansas

In partnership with The Salvation Army, Target is providing a memorable back-to-school shopping experience that equips children in need with all the essentials for a successful academic year. And the campaign, which awarded 12,000 children, affiliated with Salvation Army youth programs, with $80 gift cards to shop for clothing and supplies with the help of a designated chaperon, is doing more than filling backpacks.

Our back-to-school program with Target provides emotional encouragement for families in need. These kids are getting jazzed for the school year ahead while parents are relieved of the rising costs associated with the annual shopping tradition.

Want to support The Salvation Army’s back-to-school programs? Find your local Salvation Army here. 
With the help of volunteers, students from Norman, OK checked off their teacher’s lists by picking out supplies – and their favorite clothes – courtesy of Target’s generosity.

Check out this touching video from The Salvation Army Arkansas-Oklahoma Division, and help us say “Thank You” to Target by ‘Liking’ and commenting on their Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/target).

The Salvation Army Helps Hollister’s Hard-Hit Turkey Creek Area

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Branson, MO (August 9, 2013) Today, local Salvation Army officers, staff and volunteers will continue to assist residents, first-responders and clean-up crews in Hollister’s hard-hit Turkey Creek area.

“We arrived on the scene within the hour with water, a few clean-up kits, personnel and snacks, Lt. Shawn DeBaar, Branson Corps Officer and Incident Commander, said.

The Salvation Army will provide immediate assistance to those in need from its Emergency Disaster Services mobile canteen. The EDS canteen will provide meals, snacks, drinks, and disaster clean-up supplies.

“It has been estimated that the number of people being served through this mobile canteen site will be around seventy,” DeBaar said.

The Salvation Army is also the lead agency in charge of serving daily meals at Hollister’s Red Cross shelter. The shelter is located at the New Beginning’s Fellowship Church – 151 Elm St. On Monday, The Salvation Army served seventy-five meals from the shelter.

“We have committed to feed those in the Red Cross shelter as long as the shelter is operating,” DeBaar said.

Currently needed in-kind donations include bottled water, sports drinks (e.g Powerade, Gatorade, etc.), clean-up supplies and first aid kits. All donations may be delivered to The Salvation Army’s Branson Corps – 114 Stanley Blvd.

For more information please contact The Salvation Army’s Branson Corps at (417) 339-4434. How to Help:
Help provide immediate assistance by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY or by mailing checks to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 1715 Branson MO 65615-1715.

  • A $10 donation feeds a disaster survivor for one day
  • A $30 donation provides one food box, containing staple foods for a family of four, or one household cleanup kit, containing brooms, mops, buckets and other cleaning supplies
  • A $100 donation can serve snacks and drinks for 125 survivors and emergency personnel at the scene of a disaster
  • A $250 donation can provide one hot meal to 100 people or keep a hydration station operational for 24 hours
  • A $500 donation keeps a Salvation Army canteen fully operational for one day

About The Salvation Army:

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

Salvation Army Responds to flood victims in Nashville

August 08, 2013 – 5:26 PM EDTJason Martin[email protected]
Salvation Army Responds to flood victims in Nashville

NASHVILLE, TN (August 8, 2013) – Currently The Salvation Army’s Nashville Area Command and the American Red Cross are working together to relocate more than 300 people from the Parkwood Villa Apartment Complex, located at 3258 Brick Church Pike, to nearby shelters.

Photos:  Parkvilla  http://flic.kr/p/fqJ42d 
Flooded with nearly four feet of water from the heavy downpour that hit the area this morning, four units were severely damaged. Those buildings are currently without power and will have to be fully restored and deemed livable by the Metro Codes Department before the families can return home.

“We are working with the American Red Cross to provide food at their designated shelters for families displaced by the flood, said Jason Martin, Director of Marketing for The Salvation Army. “It is estimated that the families from Parkwood Villa will need shelter for three to 5 days.”
The Salvation Army Nashville Area Command will be providing meals and supplies to those affected by the flood and at shelters designated by the Red Cross. Doing the most good to the most people in the most need is the lifeline for The Salvation Army. The Nashville Area Command will remain in the area to lend a helping hand for as long as needed.

Additional Photos:  http://flic.kr/s/aHsjHnVN8J

To donate to The Salvation Army of Nashville’s Disaster Relief Efforts, you can text* “MidTN” to 80888 for a $10 donation, call 615-242-0411 or send a check to PO Box 78625, Nashville, TN 37207

About Nashville Area Command:
The Salvation Army, a faith-based nonprofit serving Nashville since 1890, extends a resourceful hand of assistance to families in greatest need, so that they may lift themselves from crisis to stability and independence.
About The Salvation Army, International:The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

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*To complete your gift, reply “yes” and a one-time donation of $10 will be added to your mobile phone bill or deducted from your prepaid balance. Message & Data Rates May Apply. All charges are billed by and payable to your mobile service provider. Service is available on Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint and TMobile. By participating you certify that you agree to the terms and conditions, that you are 18 yrs. or older, or have parental permission, and have authorization from the account holder. Donations are collected for the benefit of The Salvation Army by the Innovative Giving Foundation and subject to the terms found at igfn.org/t. Privacy policy: igfn.org/p. Text STOP to 80888 to stop; Text HELP to 80888 for help.

Study reveals Millennials are Charitable, Influential, & Eager to Connect Over a Cause

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Millennials – all 80 million of us – get a bad rap.

If you’re currently between the ages of 18-34, you’re a part of ‘Generation ME’ and collectively called lazy, narcissistic, and impatient. But other characteristics contradict these accusations to some degree: we’re also said to be open-minded, more supportive of equal rights, confident, upbeat, self-expressive, receptive to new ideas, and best of all – giving.

A study called The Millennial Impact reveals the “Me Generation” is actually extremely philanthropic. And this doesn’t include the “slacktivism” that exists on Facebook. But let’s be honest – it felt darn good to Like that dog photo and donate someone else’s money to rescue efforts.

Rather, we look outward rather than inward, relying on the influence of our peers when it comes to taking action. And once we’re inspired, the study reveals that we’ll go to great lengths to get family, friends and loved ones involved in our causes.
Lazy? Selfish? Hardly!

In fact, millennials are compassionate and eager to commit their time, money and skills toward causes and organizations. The study revealed that 75% of millennials donated to charitable causes last year, while 63% gave time to volunteer. While millennials are more likely to donate in smaller amounts across several organizations, they are also apt to fundraise on behalf of nonprofits by soliciting support from friends and family. And when organizations offer volunteer opportunities with limited barriers to entry (remember, we’re impatient), millennials are most likely to give back through events or by freely offering their knowledge and expertise to their charity of choice.

Take The Salvation Army Twin Cities MOST Amazing Race for example, a fundraiser based off of the popular CBS show “Amazing Race,” where teams of two people run around the city making pit stops to complete various challenges. The goal of the race is to raise awareness and funds for The Salvation Army, and commitment and fundraising are prerequisites for competing.

In the end, 30 teams raised $72,921 for food and shelter programs of The Salvation Army through activities such as planking, Bollywood dancing, and plunging off a 25-foot-high platform. And you can be darn sure these events were well documented on participants’ Facebook and Instagram pages.

You often hear that good deeds are rooted in selfishness, and there may be a bit of truth to that, but that’s because giving back feels really, really good. And if you can brag about your good work on Instagram, filter and all, and maybe even inspire your friends to do the same, then what’s the problem?

Florida Team Responds to Propane Plant Explosion

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At approximately 11:30pm on Monday, July 29, a massive explosion occurred at the Blue Rhino Propane Plant in Tavares Florida about 20 minutes northeast of Leesburg Florida. Twenty-four employees were working at the plant when the blast occurred.  Eight individuals were injured during the blast and transported to local hospitals in the area for treatment.

The Salvation Army, Leesburg Corps, responded to the scene that evening with an Emergency Disaster Services truck loaded with drinks, snacks and whatever else they could think to bring stated Lt. Matt Hedgren, recently appointed corps officer for Leesburg, Florida.

 
“I heard what appeared to sound like thunder or even music from my living room last night, but knew it was something bad when I stepped into the street and saw the orange glow”.  Lt Hedgren said he jumped in his car and drove to a nearby lake and said he could see the fire from there, which was about twenty minutes away.

As a result of the explosion, 150 people were evacuated to a local emergency shelter at the First United Methodist Church in Tavares.  Lt. Hedgren met with families of the plant workers and provided Emotional and Spiritual Care.  In coordination with the American Red Cross, The Salvation Army, Leesburg Corps served 300 drinks and snacks.

The Salvation Army Leesburg Emergency Disaster Services team will continue to monitor the situation and provide services where necessary.

For the latest emergency disaster services news follow EDS team on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

July 31, 2013 – 9:40 AM EDT Kevin Smith[email protected] (813) 267-8867

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.