Formerly Homeless Families Find New Hope in New Houses

Thursday, July 22, 2010

This summer in Glendale, California, one family made a seemingly ordinary move into a new 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartment within a small complex pleasantly named Chester Village.

However, for this mother, this was an extraordinary event as it was the first time in several years that she and her young children were finally all living together under one roof. For her, this new home represented a world of fresh beginnings and opportunities after overcoming substance abuse and homelessness, struggles that contributed to the state at one point removing her children from her care. But now, after showing her commitment to stay clean, she’s found a chance to turn her life around and offer her family stability in their new home at Chester Village.

In fact, all the families living in the 4 unit complex of Chester Village share something in common with this experience of hardship. That’s because the apartments are a unique development by The Salvation Army of Glendale meant to house formerly homeless families in order to help them transition into a stable and self-sufficient lifestyle. To qualify for housing at least one parent must have a disability stemming from substance abuse, but in order to reside in the apartment they must also have completed a substance abuse program and commit to sobriety, as well as stay for 3-5 years and show a pursuit of more education or job skills training.

The Salvation Army, with the support of the city of Glendale, overcame many obstacles over several years before finally seeing Chester Village open to accept its first occupants, but just the impact it has had already in inspiring and transforming families once devoid of hope has made the pursuit worth it.

Read more details about Chester Village’s official opening and resident testimonies in an article featured by Glendale News-Press: An army of support

Additional information about how The Salvation Army’s Glendale Corps is doing the most good in their community can be found on their website at www.glendalecorps.org.

Salvation Army Service Plays on Compton’s Hip-Hop, Musical Roots

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

When most young people hear the word “Compton,” the first thought that comes to mind is probably related to one or more of the prolific hip-hop artists who called it home. The city of Compton maintains a rich, although troubled, legacy of rappers and DJs who hail from its storied streets.

With music in the city’s blood, the local Salvation Army has geared their newest service initiative toward this part of the community’s culture by opening a new recording studio within The Salvation Army facility. Here, anyone is welcome to come in, sit down, and express themselves in verse. While most professional recording studios charge exorbitant usage fees , The Salvation Army’s studio offers recording services and use of their state of the art equipment for very nominal costs, making it attractive to a range of clients, from those with musical career aspirations to those newly or casually exploring music and recording.

Producer K9 talks about his involvement with The Salvation Army Compton’s new recording studio and the positive impact it has on the local community. Video: The Salvation Army’s Southern California Division.

Furthermore, it provides a safe environment for at-risk youth and individuals to get off the streets and away from the temptation of gangs, drugs, and violence. While these negative influences are glorified in many popular songs today, The Salvation Army in Compton requires that music recorded in their studio be ‘clean,’ or void of promoting such vices, so that their resources serve to build others up rather than tear them down.

To learn more about this cool initiative you can read the following article from the Los Angeles Wave that provides great insight into the founding and running of The Salvation Army’s recording studio: Salvation Army serves up rhymes in new recording studio

For more information about how The Salvation Army is serving Compton, visit their website at www.salvationarmy-compton.org.

Diner’s Creative Charity Fundraiser Breaks World Record

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

This may be the most unique fundraiser The Salvation Army has been involved with that I’ve heard of yet…

Crazy Otto’s Empire Diner in New York recently succeeded in making the world’s largest omelet in an effort to not only break previous records but to also raise funds for designated charities including The Salvation Army. The omelet was a whopping 2,500 square feet and designed to look like a pool table! So how does one make a gigantic, pool table-shaped omelet? The recipe includes:

– 45,000 eggs
– 150 lbs butter
– 100 gallons milk
– 200 lbs cheese
– Plus: 300 volunteers, 110 tables, 14 grills, and a tractor trailer to deliver the ingredients!

Hungry onlookers were able to take a shot on the edible pool table for only $1, as well as enter into a raffle for fun prizes. Tens of thousands of dollars were raised, half of which will be donated to The Salvation Army.

We love it when people find creative ways to give back to their community, and “creative” is an understatement in this case! But did you know that this isn’t the first time Otto’s has set an omelet world record? Read more about this unique charity fundraiser here in New York’s Evening Telegram.

We Have an App for That

Monday, July 19, 2010

Mashable, one of the most well-known blogs focused exclusively on social media, just released a their top 5 list of non-profit apps that you should know about, and The Salvation Army ‘ Bellringer’ App made the rank!