Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Since responding to the massive earthquake that jarred Haiti six months ago, The Salvation Army continues work side by side the recovering communities. We have transitioned from focusing on the provision of immediate needs, including temporary shelter, food, water and medical aid, to providing for long-term needs that will help survivors get back to a level of normalcy in their lives.
And today, in an exciting step for many displaced Haitians, we’ve completed construction of 600 long-term intermediary housing shelters in Jacmel to help relocate those displaced by the earthquake back to their home communities.
Our Transitional Shelter Program has been a great way to empower Haitians during this reconstruction process. In a nation where more than 2/3 of the labor force is unemployed, more than 400 Haitians have been hired as carpenters and construction crew-members to assist in reconstruction efforts and be actively involved with reestablishing their communities.
The shelters house on average five people and last several years. With Haiti in the midst of its rainy season, their design will also enable them to withstand strong winds as well as drain water away from the structure, helping to reduce the spread of water-borne illnesses.
Now that hundreds of shelters have been built in Jacmel, The Salvation Army will work with Haitian government officials to plan the development of another 1,000-1,500 homes in the northern coastal community of Petit-Goâve, which was severely damaged by a strong earthquake aftershock in January.
We are excited by the steps being taken by Haitians and the The Salvation Army to help the country heal and emerge from this disaster stronger than before! As The Salvation Army’s Lt. Col. Dan Starrett stated, “These homes are the first steps of many in that direction.”
If you’d like to support our ongoing work in the country, you can give via www.salvationarmyusa.org, 1-800-SAL-ARMY and text messaging “HAITI” to 52000 with confirming “Yes.”
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
As South Texas communities brace themselves for the effects of Hurricane Alex, The Salvation Army is already providing shelter and food to people in preparation for the first hurricane of the season.
Yesterday The Salvation Army opened the doors of its shelter in McAllen, TX to residents evacuating ahead of the storm. They housed 73 people, of which 23 were evacuees, and served 140 meals. They continue to remain on stand-by in case additional help is needed at any of the area designated shelters.
Mobile feeding units called canteens are in place and ready to serve in the southern Texas cities of Corpus Christi, Harlingen, McAllen and Laredo, Texas. Several more canteens are staged in San Antonio with staff and volunteers. The Salvation Army mobile kitchen, capable of preparing 20,000 meals daily, and generator have been made available and are ready for deployment if necessary. The Salvation Army will also provide clean-up kits if excessive flooding results from Hurricane Alex.
“The Salvation Army is anticipating several days of sheltering and mass feeding along the Gulf Coast area”, said Major Terry Israel, Divisional Secretary in Texas.“ These services will be available at least through Friday, and as long as the need exists.”
For more information about The Salvation Army emergency disaster services program or to support The Salvation Army’s emergency relief efforts, please visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest updates on Salvation Army disaster activities, follow our Disaster Services team on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
News of Haiti’s ongoing recovery has slipped from the headlines, but the country’s need has not disappeared. Despite this drop in media attention, The Salvation Army and volunteers continue to devote countless man hours to serving earthquake survivors.
Just this past weekend hundreds of individuals from Kalamazoo, MI and the surrounding area gathered at an old Sam’s Club warehouse where they packaged 620,784 meals for Haiti over a period of two days. The event was hosted by hunger relief organization Numana, Inc. and The Salvation Army. A photo run by the Kalamazoo Gazette showed a grown man and a four year-old boy working together in the assembly-line style packing process. Though the picture may at first appear unremarkable, the sharp contrast of this seemingly mismatched pair captures the unique sense of unity and passion to help that bonds an otherwise diverse group of volunteers. Kalamazoo proved to have a great turn out of helping hands!
You would expect with it being more than five months following the earthquake, public interest would fade. But Numana hosts widely-attended meal packing events like the one in Kalamazoo every week across the country in order that The Salvation Army will have a continuous supply of food to distribute to Haitian survivors. Actually, three separate events will be taking place this weekend in Kansas, Wisconsin, and Arkansas, with Arkansas attempting to set a record of packing 2 million meals during a first-ever 24 consecutive hour event! It actually seems like the public’s desire to help is gaining steam.
Numana founder Rick McNary told the Kalamazoo Gazette that in the five months since the earthquake more than 18 million meals have been packaged for Haiti through Numana’s partnership with The Salvation Army and volunteers across the country!
The Salvation Army is incredibly thankful for the help of Numana and all the compassionate volunteers who continue to diligently give their time, efforts, and resources for those in need in Haiti, even after the overwhelming need no longer makes news headlines!
For more information about The Salvation Army in Kalamazoo, visit their website at www.tsakalamazoo.org or find them on Facebook.
You can also learn more about Numana, Inc. through their website www.numanainc.com.
Monday, June 14, 2010
The Salvation Army is responding to the scene of deadly flashfloods that struck Western Arkansas last Thursday and Friday. Many campers at Albert Pike Recreational Campgrounds were caught off-guard by the storm, which has caused a reported 20 fatalities. Rescue operations continue.
The Salvation Army was called to the scene to provide food, water and emotional and spiritual support to first responders and survivors. Our incident command center has been established in Langley, Arkansas, and Salvation Army response teams have been assembled with crews from the Little Rock, Fort Smith, and Hot Springs areas, with more on standby.
To help support our relief efforts and assist individuals and families affected by the floods, you can donate by visiting www.salvationarmyusa.org or calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. Please designate your contributions to “Arkansas flood.”
Thank you for your prayers and support for these individuals and families who have suffered so greatly during what was meant to be a weekend of recreation.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
SALVATION Army emergency response teams in Guatemala are providing assistance after the country was hit by two major disasters within 10 days.
A state of emergency was declared after the eruption of the Pacaya Volcano – about 15 miles south of the capital, Guatemala City. A television journalist was killed in the eruption and the international airport had to be closed. Some 1,600 people were evacuated from the slopes of the volcano and two to three inches of ash built up on streets in some southern parts of the capital.
Dots mark the path of Tropical Storm Agatha
While the country was struggling to deal with the aftermath of the eruption, Tropical Storm Agatha moved across central America, bringing devastation on a huge scale. Of the 150 people known to have been killed in the region, more than 120 were from Guatemala. These numbers may rise.
Some communities were cut off by floods and mudslides, and the ash clean-up operation was badly affected. At one point a Salvation Army team was stranded after a landslide blocked the roads to a community where it was providing assistance.
Almost 112,000 people were evacuated from their homes across Guatemala and around 30,000 had to seek temporary accommodation in emergency shelters.
The local authorities set up a campaign to provide support and The Salvation Army played its part, delivering coffee and warm meals. Salvation Army officers (church ministers) coordinated the response and other Salvationists worked as volunteers.
The first assistance provided by The Salvation Army was at San Vicente, in response to the volcanic eruption. The number of people seeking help increased because of the storm and support is being given at shelters in Tierra Nueva.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
May 23 – May 29 has been designated National Hurricane Preparedness Week in anticipation of the 2010 hurricane season that begins June 1. For now, forecasters predict a more active storm season compared to last year’s generally mild one, but being informed and prepared can help diminish the damaging effects of hurricanes.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has set up a helpful page online about hurricane hazards, preparedness information, and practical ways to plan ahead. Click here or visit http://www.nhc.noaa.gov to learn more. Plus, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a fun page for kids with lots of hurricane background information so that they can be knowledgeable and prepared as well.
And you have probably seen in the news or even been served by The Salvation Army as we provide needed relief following hurricanes and other disasters. In fact, The Salvation Army’s first major disaster response effort in the United States followed the devastating hurricane that destroyed Galveston, TX in 1900, so we have a long history of disaster relief! Our goal is to meet human need by providing material, physical, emotional, and spiritual comfort to survivors and first responders, which could come in the form of a hot meal, a temporary shelter, financial assistance, a shoulder to lean on, and many other things.
Hopefully the referenced links will be helpful as you prepare for hurricane season. We’ll keep you updated on important information and our efforts this season. Be sure to visit our website at www.salvationarmyusa.org, as well as our national Facebook and Twitter pages!
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
[Million Meal Event]
Photo: The Salvation Army Western Territory
As The Salvation Army continues our relief work in Haiti following January’s earthquake, we need 2,000 volunteers to help us prepare more meals for earthquake survivors.
The Salvation Army and Numana Inc. will be hosting another Million Meals Packing event next weekend in Seattle, Washington on Saturday, May 29 and Sunday, May 30 at the Washington State Convention Center.
You and your friends are invited to the packing party, where you will prepare bags of vitamin-fortified rice, beans and vegetables. One bag is enough to feed a family of six! The work required is simple, but it’s a great time and your efforts will go a long way in benefiting the lives of others in need.
*If you’re in the Seattle area and ready to volunteer a few hours of your time, visit The Salvation Army Northwest Division’s registration page at http://www.salvationarmynw.org/haiti for more information.*
For fun photos of past events, check out The Salvation Army Western Territory’s Flickr page here.
Monday, May 17, 2010
The Salvation Army and Numana, Inc.’s next community meal packing event for Haiti relief will take place in the Chicago, IL area (Melrose Park) this coming weekend on Saturday, May 22 and Sunday, May 23rd.
If you can spare just a few hours to help earthquake survivors, register online and come lend a hand! Volunteers across the country have already packed more than 10 million meals for Haiti, and we hope to prepare 1 million more this weekend with your help!
We are partnering with Navistar and will be holding the event at their 10400 W. North Avenue, Melrose Park, IL location.
For more information or to register for the event, visit The Salvation Army Chicago’s website at http://www.salarmychicago.org/volunteer/ or call 773-205-3636.
View the below video from Chicago’s WGN News for information about another Salvation Army and Numana Meals for Haiti event that took place recently in Elgin, IL.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
The Nashville Salvation Army is beginning the second week of its short term recovery phase in response to the historic floods that enveloped inundated Nashville and other parts of Tennessee.
For the most up to date and detailed information, follow The Nashville Salvation Army’s updates on Twitter (@SalArmy), Facebook (The Salvation Army – Nashville), or on their blog at www.salarmynashville.wordpress.com.
Here are a Few Brief Updates on the Recovery Efforts:
Thankful: Four truckloads of supplies, generously donated by Knoxville’s WBIR TV, Food City and FedEx arrived yesterday, as well as 17 volunteers to unload and distribute them throughout the community. An NBC Telethon featuring country music legends also raised $1.7 million for flood relief, the proceeds of which will benefit The Salvation Army and other organizations’ efforts in helping Nashville to recover.
Food and Drinks: Mobile kitchens (canteens) are providing food and water in several of the hardest hit areas. Through Sunday evening May 9th, Salvation Army crews had served almost 9,000 meals and more than 12,000 beverages, as well as provided spiritual and emotional care to about 600 individuals.
Emergency Assistance: Anyone who needs emergency assistance can pick up at designated Salvation Army centers food boxes and comfort kits that include toiletry, hygienic, and cleaning items.
Recovery Action Plan: As The Salvation Army moves into the short term recovery phase, additional clothing will be provided, assistance with rent and utilities, and help with household items and small appliance purchases.
Ways to Help: Monetary donations are the best way to help. Gifts may be made online at www.SalArmy-Nasvhille.org or checks may be mailed to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 78625, Nashville, TN 37207. You may also make a text donation by texting the word “FLOOD” to 90999 and a $10.00 donation will be made to the local Salvation Army.
The Nashville Salvation Army is also accepting cases of bottled water, NEW socks, underwear, t-shirts, hygiene kits for men or women, and supplies for clean-up kits which include: mop, broom, work gloves, mask, sponge, squeegee, scrub brush, rubber gloves, bleach, all-purpose cleaner, trash bags and paper towels. Please DO NOT drop off used clothing items at this time.
Visit The Nashville Salvation Army’s website at www.Salarmy-Nashville.org for more information about benefit events, drop off locations, and more.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
The Salvation Army is responding to the tornadoes that ripped through Oklahoma yesterday. Four fatalities have been reported in Central Oklahoma with 57 injuries, and nearly 37,000 homes are without power. Local authorities are assessing damage and conducting searches for survivors at this time. Searches are expected to continue through the night.
Within The Salvation Army’s Arkansas-Oklahoma Division, mobile feeding units (canteens) and individual officers are providing food and refreshments for first responders and others in the some of the hardest hit areas. An emotional and spiritual care team will also be deployed to support those affected by the storm’s fatalities.
For anyone who would like to help those affected by the tornadoes, please consider donating at www.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY and designate your contribution to “Oklahoma tornadoes.” Monetary donations will ensure The Salvation Army can meet the most immediate needs of those impacted by the storm.