OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (April 24, 2018) â€“ In Dewey and Woodward counties in western Oklahoma, wildfires have burned more than 349,000 acres destroying nearly 100 homes, hundreds of miles of fencing, an estimated 30,000 head of cattle, hundreds of bales of hay, as well as, numerous outbuildings, farm equipment and machinery. A State of Emergency remains in effect for 52 Oklahoma counties due to ongoing wildfires and fire conditions.
The Salvation Army is participating in the Multi-Agency Resource Centers (MARC) in Taloga and Woodward at the request of emergency management officials, along with other agencies affiliated with the Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) and other public agencies. This past Sunday and Monday, The Salvation Army was in action at the MARC in Taloga, providing financial assistance, in the form of gift cards, to residents impacted by the fires. A mobile feeding unit (canteen) from The Salvation Army of Enid was deployed to provide lunch, dinner, drinks and snacks to visitors, volunteers and workers at the Taloga MARC, providing food for the body and soul.
â€œDuring disaster service, we address the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the people who need us most,â€� said Steven Hartsook, Divisional Director of Emergency Disaster Services. â€œA smile, a shoulder, a good meal, or a cold drink. Simple but impactful ways to share the love of Jesus Christ with survivors, volunteers, and first responders.â€�
Mike Miles, Woodward County Case Manager, and Shirley Logue, Divisional Director of Service Extensions, worked The Salvation Armyâ€™s booth at the MARC in Taloga. Shirley states â€œA couple of individuals I worked with were moved to tears by the assistance. One lady even asked for our names and the address of the office so she could send a thank you note. Everyone who came through seemed to be grateful, appreciative to see their neighbors and in overall good spirits considering what they have just gone through.â€�
The canteen will also be on site at the Woodward Conference Center this Friday and Saturday to once again provide food, snacks and hydration to those visiting the MARC. The Salvation Army of Woodward County will also be on hand to provide gift cards to those who have been affected by the wildfires.
The Salvation Army will continue to work with Emergency Management and VOAD to ensure the response is closely coordinated. Further updates will be provided as necessary.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: 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. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to www.SalvationArmyUSA.org or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.