Tuesday, June 12, 2012
While participating in the mission trip in the Turks and Caicos Islands, we were able to visit a government-sponsored school called New Beginnings, a place for students whose parents cannot afford private school and for teens who are troubled. Among the students are girls who are either pregnant or have already become mothers, and Haitian-born kids who live on the island and are rejected.
Friday, January 20, 2012
It’s unlikely that you’ve ever heard of the Solid Rock Club of Alexandria, VA. The intimate club of 25 men in recovery at The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) is no secret, but the humble work they’ve accomplished over the years serving others seems to be in hiding!
I discovered the group’s existence after stumbling upon an article featuring their good work on The Salvation Army’s Southern Spirit Online site (thanks Southern Territory!).
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Before joining The Salvation Army as an Officer, Major Evelyn Chavez worked as a Triage Medical Assistant. Her experience provided her with the proper training to deal with stress and trauma – fitting for the life-changing situations she’s been faced with since joining The Salvation Army.
And she’s seen it all.
Major Chavez provided care at Columbine high school in the late 90’s following the shootings. She served as Incident Commander for survivors of Hurricane Katrina, and, most recently worked as a Chaplain in Port au Prince following the earthquake in Haiti.
But she’ll never forget Ground Zero. After the 9/11 attacks, Major Chavez worked tirelessly for two straight weeks in a Salvation Army tent at Ground Zero treating victims.
She sees every opportunity to serve as a blessing from God, a way to serve Him better. What an Amazing Example!
Thanks to the Salvation Army Western Territory’s blog Expect Change, her journal entries from that time have been recorded. Every day of this week Expect Change will be posting a journal entry from Major Chavez’s time at Ground Zero, chronicling the conversations, the scenes, and the personal moments that we’d otherwise not know about.
You can visit Expect Change by Clicking Here. This is not to be missed!
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
The Wall Street Journal published an article this week about a growing trend among affluent families of teaching their children the importance of giving. Thankfully, “doing good” is not dependant on financial status!
There are always opportunities to pass along to the younger generation the value of helping others. The article suggests practical ideas applicable to any parent, like simply talking about the “good feeling” you get from giving, bringing children with you to volunteer and visit charities, or letting kids educate parents on causes they care about, rather than the other way around.
We believe philanthropy is a vital life lesson that you’re never too young to learn. Here are just a few ways The Salvation Army can help your family put some of these suggestions into practice:
* Have your kids collect their old clothes and toys for giveaway and bring them with you to donate to a Salvation Army Family Thrift Store. Make the experience even more impactful by explaining how their gift will benefit people in need, and use the videos and resources at our website www.satruck.org to show them real life stories.
* Make volunteering a family event, such as serving meals together at a Salvation Army shelter or being bell ringers. Visit your local Salvation Army corps to learn how you can help address your community’s specific needs.
* Empower children to donate financially. Have them fill out the online donation form for you or let them click the “Donate Now” button. Give them some change to put in the Christmas Red Kettle, or help them host their own online Red Kettle. You could even ask them if they’d like to put a percentage of their allowance toward supporting The Salvation Army.
* Find out what they’re passionate about. The Salvation Army serves a vast range of needs that they can get involved with or learn more about on our website. Maybe they have a desire to help other kids or feel strongly about supporting disaster survivors – they could get started right away by sending a child in need to summer camp or donating to our disaster relief efforts.
* Make special occasions about ‘others.’ Start a family tradition to make a donation in your child’s name on their birthday, purchase and give a toy at Christmas time for a child in need through Salvation Army Angel Tree, or serve a meal together at a Salvation Army shelter at Thanksgiving.
* Put your money where your mouth is. Offer to match a donation that your child makes. Set a long-term goal to work towards to give your child a greater sense of accomplishment and help your family work together as a team.
* Gear school and extra-curricular projects towards philanthropic causes. Programs such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts require participants to design and implement service projects. Many children and young adults have worked with The Salvation Army to complete their assignments and benefit their communities in the process.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
It’s National Volunteer Week, a time for us to recommit ourselves to serving others and celebrate those who generously give back!
Last year, 3,411,613 volunteers assisted The Salvation Army by working in our food programs, serving as Red Kettle bell ringers, assisting at-risk youth, rebuilding disaster sites, and more. Our volunteers are critical partners in helping us fulfill our promise to America of “Doing the Most Good.”
As President Obama stated in his presidential proclamation, “…These everyday heroes make a real and lasting impact on the lives of millions of women and men across the globe.”
We completely agree!
This week we will share on our blog how volunteers are getting involved with The Salvation Army across the US, as well as what we’re doing to express our sincere appreciation for their support, so check back for updates.
If you would like to get involved with a Salvation Army near you, search for opportunities via www.volunteermatch.org. Many of our local units post opportunities on this website, and we’d love to have you join us.
Friday, April 1, 2011
FedEx has a long history of supporting survivors of natural disasters worldwide. They’ve even partnered with us during many of our local and international relief efforts.
We want to express our gratitude to them yet again, as FedEx has committed $1 million to support the Japan disaster relief work of several non-profit organizations, including $100,000 to The Salvation Army.
Their donation will come in the form of in-kind transportation, which will be a huge help to our work. It’s usually extremely expensive and inefficient to ship materials long distance when they can be bought locally to the disaster site. But there are some things, such as technologies, medical supplies, specialized items, or scarce materials, that are not readily available and must be transported from afar.
The Salvation Army in Japan is working diligently at several sites assisting survivors. Besides blankets, they have not yet requested additional materials from our Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO) here in the United States. If and when they do express additional needs over the course of rebuilding, we are prepared to respond quickly.
We are extremely grateful to FedEx, whose donation will go a long way in supporting Japan recovery.
To learn more about FedEx disaster relief efforts, visit news.fedex.com or about.fedex.com.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Three Salvation Army teams in Japan have arrived and are serving at several disaster sites in Japan. The Japanese Government has recognized The Salvation Army’s work and has given our teams permission to enter the disaster area and use access roads that are closed off to the public.
The first of the three teams went to Sendai, where about 1,000 meals were served to evacuees. Our mobile emergency canteen prepared hot meals and drinks to give out at the Sendai Salvation Army church.
Another team went to a relief office in the Mito area and unloaded bottles of water, biscuits, blankets, diapers and tissue boxes for distribution to evacuees.
The third team headed to an area where people had been evacuated from the vicinity around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station, but snow and shortage of petrol meant they had to divert to other areas to support evacuees.
Offers of support are pouring in from around the world. Two experienced emergency services workers have flown to Tokyo from The Salvation Army’s International Headquarters in London to assist their Japanese colleagues. The BBC reports that volunteers from a British group which failed to obtain clearance to work in the affected areas ‘donated their food and medical supplies to The Salvation Army working in the country’.
The Salvation Army’s Korea Territory has arranged for the K-Water Corporation to provide 100,000 bottles of water to be sent to Japan – 30,000 bottles by the end of the week, followed by the rest within a short time – and the Korea Disaster Relief Association will be sending 5,000 first-aid kits. Salvationists in Korea are holding a month of prayer for the people of Japan.
In a touching show of solidarity 1,500 young Salvationists in Haiti – who themselves have recent experience of a devastating earthquake – made prayer for Japan a focus of their rally in Fond-des-Nègres on March 11-12.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
As much as people like to bash social media, sites like Facebook and Twitter have played crucial roles during recent global events.
From serving as the one of the very few connections between earthquake-shaken Haiti and the outside world, to helping organize revolutionary protests in Egypt, social media is proving to the world stage that hey, maybe there’s more to this than just letting virtual friends know the scoop on our relationship status.
There’s a lot of good that can come from this stuff if we use it well.
A few New York interns appear to have already figured that out. As a part of their project “Unheard in New York,” these interns gave four NYC homeless men their own prepaid cell phones and Twitter accounts with the purpose of helping them tell their stories. Every day Danny, Derrick, Albert and Carlos tweet about what it’s like to live on the streets, the struggles they face, and how they came to be homeless. From once feeling like they didn’t have a voice, they now have thousands of people following, talking with, and learning from them on Twitter.
If these tweets can give a voice to the homeless, what can your tweets do? How can your Facebook status become more than just the status quo? We want to hear your ideas for using social media to do good.
I’d like to suggest one way you can get started – connect with The Salvation Army online. We’re on Facebook (The S alvation Army USA) and Twitter (@SalvationArmyUS). We share how we’re serving people in need every day and opportunities for you to be a part of it.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Nancy Lublin, CEO and “Chief Old Person” of DoSomething.org, has a hunch that age gives young people an advantage over their older counterparts in accomplishing social good.
Watch the video above to learn how Donald Trump and Milk Duds led to her epiphany.
It’s an interesting thought, considering that when it comes to ‘accomplishing stuff,’ juvenescence is generally viewed as something to be overcome based on the hindrances associated with it – the perceived lack of life experience, few funds, etc.
But not according to Nancy. Regarding being young, her mantra is embrace it and use it while you can. She knows from experience, and so does The Salvation Army.
We have many youth activists involved in our organization who are making big changes in their communities. Just look at examples from:
– Ryan, a 14 yr. old from Florida whose gleaning efforts have helped provide more than 1,600 nutritious meals for homeless men, women and children. http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/?p=4992
– Stephen, an 11 yr. old who has held Christmas parties to collect toys for needy families since he was a preschooler. http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/?paged=4
– Several young musical artists (Honor Society, Ashlyne Huff, and Emily Osment among them) who are raising awareness and getting involved in community service through Salvation Army programs. http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/?p=4473 http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/?s=here+comes+trouble+tour&x=0&y=0
– Connor, a 9 yr. old who was so moved by the need resulting from Haiti’s earthquake, he used a coffee can to start his own donations drive and garnered national attention for it. http://blog.salvationarmyusa.org/?p=320
Just to be clear, we don’t promote stalking Donald Trump or other questionable strategies to test Nancy’s theory.
We do, however, encourage you to not use age as an excuse to prevent you from doing something great, especially when it comes to serving others. You’re never too young, too old, or too middle-aged to help do the most good.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Salvation Army in Indonesia Provides Help to Volcano Evacuees
Salvation Army teams in Indonesia continue to help those affected by the eruption of Mount Merapi in Java. At least 138 people are known to have been killed and more than 200,000 evacuated.
It’s been a dangerous and difficult time for our workers and those of other NGO’s. A team from the Salvation Army’s William Booth Hospital in the city of Semarang originally responded to the first eruption during the end of October and set up operations only 8 km from Mt. Merapi. But after another, more violent eruption on November 3, they and everyone else in the area had to be evacuated immediately with no time to recover tents, supplies, or resources.
Our team is now working at a safer distance (approx. 36 km front the volcano) at Tlogoadi Village Elementary School assisting 692 displaced people, including 140 children.
The circumstances are difficult in their makeshift shelter – there’s a lack of nutritious food, clean water for drinking and bathing, and not enough toilets (10 for 692 people). But The Salvation Army is providing as much support as possible with medical care and nutrient-rich food such as noodles, sardines, eggs, milk, and porridge. Local women from Tlogoadi are helping cook.
The Salvation Army Emergency team will continue working in the area until the volcano settles and people are allowed to return home.
Salvation Army Responds as Tomas Storms Across the Caribbean
The Salvation Army across the Caribbean is responding to damage caused by Tropical Storm Tomas. Some countries like Haiti experienced overall minimal damage. For others, it was a much different story.
In Barbados, Salvation Army Major Dewhurst Jonas described it as “the worst storm to hit…since Hurricane Janet in 1955.” On the north side of the island many homes and businesses suffered significant damage, along with some Salvation Army properties. Most homes were left without water or power, and those of some Salvationists were destroyed completely.
In response, The Salvation Army quickly provided those affected with hot meals, shelter and basic necessities, for which the Barbados government expressed their deep appreciation.
In St Lucia, where 14 lives were lost in the storm, the Army is providing relief assistance in cooperation with NEMO, the government’s National Emergency Measures Organization, to offer counseling and some daily feeding programs.
A local Salvation Army leader reported widespread damage across the island including destroyed homes, fallen trees, downed utility lines, flooding, and landslides.
In St Vincent The Salvation Army is offering assistance as needed, Jamaica appears to have faced little damage, and Haiti seems to have fared well where one report describes it as ‘business as usual’.