Day 5: Service Continues Across Storm Ravaged South

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) personnel continue to serve those in need across the southern US. Currently, EDS crews are at work in Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky.

After five days of intense service, several locations are scaling back efforts while some locations hit especially hard by the storms are still in need of daily feeding and spiritual care.

Alabama/Mississippi – Currently, 40 Salvation Army ESD feeding units and one shower trailer are actively serving in Mississippi and Alabama. Over the last five days, tens of thousands of meals and drinks have been distributed. On Friday and Saturday alone, EDS teams served 30,820 meals and 51,072 drinks. 1,314 people received emotional and spiritual care.

Arkansas – EDS personnel continue to monitor rising water levels which have reached major flood stage in 9 counties. At present, one mobile feeding unit is serving Randolph County. Approximately 5,000 meals have been served since Monday.

Georgia – While operations are beginning to wind down, several units are still serving the field. At the request of FEMA, a mobile feeding unit will remain in Spalding County, as will a social service representative in Harold County. Additionally, operations will continue in Catoosa and Walker counties through the end of the week. Teams have served 8,596 meals and 4,195 drinks in Spalding, 720 meals and 1,490 drinks in Rome, and 120 meals and 350 drinks in Cartersville.

Kentucky/Tennessee/Virginia – EDS operations will diminish in Henderson, Murfreesboro and Clarksville, TN as local resources are once again available for storm survivors. In Chattanooga and Cleveland, TN as well as North Georgia, EDS crews are increasing their services to keep pace with the needs of communities hit hard by the storms. A strong presence remains in Dyersburg, TN, Greenville, TN, Washington County, VA, and Henderson, KY. As of Sunday morning, 800 volunteers had logged 7,000 hours while helping staff serve approximately 14,500 meals throughout the division.

The Salvation Army is grateful to the public for their continued support.

The best way to help tornado survivors and rescue workers is to make a financial contribution. Monetary donations allow disaster responders to immediately meet the specific needs of disaster survivors. The Salvation Army asks those who want to help to visit www. salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769) and designate their gift “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.” Checks may be made out to:

The Salvation Army Disaster Relief

P.O. Box 100339

Atlanta, GA 30384-0339

At this point, in-kind donations are not being accepted outside the disaster area. Used clothing and used furniture are seldom required during an incident. However, these gifts are vitally important in supporting the day-to-day work of your local Salvation Army. Please consider giving these items to your local Salvation Army Thrift Store or dial 1-800-SA-TRUCK.

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Caring for Those Hit by “The Worst Local Disaster in 30+ Years”

Saturday, April 30, 2011

The following account was provided by The Salvation Army’s Lt. David Costellow, who serves with The Salvation Army in Chattanooga, TN:

“In what has been deemed as the worst disaster he has seen in his 35 years of emergency management by Hamilton County EMS director, Don Allan, we continue to witness incredible scenes of destruction in the aftermath of this area’s recent tornado outbreaks. We continue to serve in our five surrounding counties (Catoosa, Walker, Dade, Hamilton, and Bradley) by providing hot meals, water, and emotional and spiritual care.

In Cleveland, TN (Bradley County) over 260 volunteers helped provide 2,650 meals as well as over 400 food boxes with non-perishable food to those who are still without power. This weekend, a distribution center has been set up at the Peerless Road Church of God of Prophecy to provide donated items such as clothes, water, toiletries, etc. Salvation Army social services are being provided at that site as well.

At another hard-hit area in Walker County, Georgia, our canteen services have provided over 1,000 meals each day since the beginning of the response. The need continues to remain high in that area as well as in neighboring Catoosa County where lunch and dinner is being served at the Ringgold City Hall.

The demand for hot meals continues to remain high as well as the demand for monetary donations. We need your help! First and foremost we solicit your prayers for the tornado victims and relief workers. We also remind you that there are a variety of ways in which they can donate monetarily to the relief effort.”

You can financially support The Salvation Army’s tornado relief efforts in multiple ways:

(In all cases, please designate your gift “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.”)

* Visit www.salvationarmyusa.org and click on the red “Donate Now” button in the top right corner. (In the donation form, designate to tornado relief in the ‘Specific Use’ field.)
* Call 1-800-SAL-ARMY.
* Text “GIVE” to 80888 to make a $10 donation. Please confirm when prompted with “Yes.”

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Day 4: The Salvation Army Comforts Storm Survivors

Saturday, April 30, 2011

At least 340 people died in the violent tornadoes that swept across the southern US only days ago. Hundreds more are still missing. However, in the face of devastation, countless volunteers and donors have reached out to survivors in their time of greatest need.

The Salvation Army is currently meeting immediate needs and evaluating long-term recovery efforts in Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky. Additional teams are on standby and will be sent as needed.

Alabama & Mississippi – 40 EDS mobile feeding units, a shower trailer, and emotional/spiritual care teams are serving storm survivors in affected areas. Tens of thousands of meals and beverages have been distributed at multiple locations throughout the region. To learn more about relief efforts including current areas of service, please click here.

Arkansas– EDS teams are currently providing food, beverages, and emotional/spiritual care throughout Garland, Randolph, and Jackson Counties. Several areas are facing both tornado and flood damage. As of Friday evening, 3,195 meals and 3,058 drinks had been distributed.

Georgia – Feeding and emotional/spiritual care efforts continue throughout Spalding, Floyd, and Bartow counties. As of Saturday morning, EDS teams had distributed 2,628 meals in Spalding County, 580 in Floyd County, and 250 in Bartow County. Additionally, dozens of clean-up kits were given to survivors in need.

EDS teams from the Kentucky/Tennessee Division are providing food, beverages, and emotional/spiritual support at various locations in northwest Georgia including the hard-hit town of Ringgold.

Virginia – EDS teams from the Kentucky/Tennessee Division have been mobilized to meet material and spiritual needs of residents and determine next steps in service for affected communities.

Tennessee – Many locations across Tennessee are reporting moderate to severe tornado, water, and hail damage. EDS crews are offering food, beverages, and emotional/spiritual support in the following areas: Chattanooga, Cleveland, Murfreesboro, Union City, Clarksville, Greenville, and Memphis. In Cleveland alone, 2,650 hot meals and 400 food boxes were provided to residents in need. To read more about efforts in Tennessee, please click here.

Kentucky –Personnel continue to serve storm survivors in Paducah, Henderson, and Louisville through food distribution, emotional and spiritual care, and evaluation of long-term recovery needs. EDS leadership is also keeping a watchful eye on rising water levels and making preparations should a flood response be required. To learn more about Kentucky relief efforts, please click here.

Thank you for your continued support.

Are you looking to help?

The best way is to make a financial contribution since monetary donations allow disaster responders to immediately meet the specific needs of disaster survivors. You can do this by:

* Visiting www. salvationarmyusa.org and designating your gift “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.”
* Calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769) and designate “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak”
* Texting “GIVE” to 80888
* Sending a check to:

The Salvation Army Disaster Relief
P.O. Box 100339
Atlanta, GA 30384-0339
Designate “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.”

At this point, in-kind donations are not being accepted outside the disaster area.

Volunteer inquiries can be made with your local Salvation Army.

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Help The Salvation Army Help Tornado Survivors

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Salvation Army has released a Public Service Announcement with information about how you can support our relief efforts for tornado survivors in the southeast. Please share this with your friends and family!

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Salvation Army’s Response to Tornadoes Continues to Grow

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) personnel continue to respond to tornado activity throughout Alabama and Mississippi.

In response, the Alabama-Louisiana-Mississippi (ALM) Division of The Salvation Army has mobilized 15 feeding units and a communications unit. They are providing food, drinks, and spiritual support to storm victims in Birmingham, Tuscaloosa, Guntersville, Molten, and Phil Campbell, Alabama. In Mississippi, disaster response teams are serving in Kemper County, Webster County, and Oxford.

Locations within AL and MS are reporting moderate to severe damage. As a result, Divisional Emergency Disaster Teams are being activated in various areas. Multiple EDS vehicles and teams are being positioned throughout the division for rapid response in areas where severe flooding is likely.

Tuscaloosa, AL

EDS teams from Mobile, Selma, and Columbus, MS have been activated to provide services to the Tuscaloosa area. Salvation Army Feeding units are being deployed to local affected areas prepared to serve 500 meals.

Birmingham, AL

The Salvation Army of Birmingham responded immediately to the hardest hit areas. 6 feeding units from Dothan and Birmingham, AL and Baton Rouge and Lake Charles, LA are being used to provide food and drinks in many neighborhoods in Greater Birmingham.

Guntersville, AL

Disaster units from Huntsville and Gadsden continue to serve storm victims. They are stationed at the Community Rec Center in Guntersville and the Gadsden Unit at Lowe’s, respectively.

Marion County, AL

The Laurel, MS feeding unit is responding to serve the North Alabama village of Phil Campbell and a team from Florence, AL is responding to serve the community of Hackleburg.

Oxford, MS

A Mobile Feeding unit from Jackson, MS has responded to serve residents food, drinks and pastoral care.

Webster County, MS

The Tupelo Canteen is in place and serving the community of Smithville, MS.

Kemper County, MS

The Salvation Army of Meridian has responded to serve in the east Mississippi County.

Additionally, The Salvation Army’s EDS Warehouse and Command Center in Jackson is being used to manage the widespread response across Alabama and Mississippi.

As damage reports are received, Salvation Army EDS personnel and mobile feeding units currently on standby in Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Maryland and West Virginia will be deployed.

For more information about supporting The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts, click here.

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Tornado Response: What We’re Doing and How You Can Help

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

[Tornado]

Note: For the latest updates, follow Salvation Army EDS on Twitter @salarmyEDS and on their website at disaster.salvationarmyusa.org.

Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams are responding to the destruction left by an outbreak of tornadoes that tore through the southeastern US.

According to news reports, more than 70 people have lost their lives, and Tuscaloosa, Alabama has suffered a great deal of damage. More storms are tracking through N. Alabama, N.W. Georgia, and S.E. Tennessee.

The Salvation Army already has teams providing food, drinks, and spiritual support to storm survivors in Tuscaloosa, Guntersville, and Lauderdale County, Alabama as well as Montpelier and Oxford, Mississippi. Mobile feeding units from the Kentucky-Tennessee Division (KTN) are serving victims in Chattanooga and Cleveland, Tennessee.

Additional Salvation Army EDS feeding units are currently in route to affected areas throughout Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Another 22 mobile feeding units including catering trucks, mobile kitchens, and a 20,000 meal per day full service field kitchen are on standby.

Financial donations are needed to help with Salvation Army disaster relief efforts. If you’d like to support storm survivors:

• Call 1-800-SAL-ARMY and designate “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.”

• Text “GIVE” to 80888.

• Send checks to The Salvation Army Disaster Relief, P.O. Box 100339, Atlanta, GA 30384-0339. Please designate “April 2011 Tornado Outbreak.”

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Japan Update

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Commissioner Makoto Yoshida of The Salvation Army Japan provided us with an updated report on relief work taking place in the country.

General recovery efforts are progressing well – super markets are gradually reopening, 80-90% of gas stations in northern Japan have resumed business, and about 70% of roads are accessible. The Japanese government is significantly supporting the country’s relief efforts and providing much of the needed temporary housing.

However, he says the unresolved nuclear power station failure is causing uneasiness in the public. The search for missing people also remains daunting, as officials estimate there are 12,000 dead, 15,000 missing and 166,000 evacuees.

The Salvation Army Japan remains committed in their efforts, and we have brief updates from our dispersed disaster teams:

SENDAI: A team of 17 relief personnel and volunteers visited in March 23, distributing 1,130 meals and necessities, along with candy to the 83 children present. At that time, water and electricity supply was mostly restored, but gas is expected to take much longer. Supplies have been gradually reaching disaster areas, but camps have requested more tissues, diapers, and underwear. The Salvation Army believes that due to increased stability, food distribution may no longer be necessary in Sendai, and they’re exploring the possibility of visiting areas with greater need about 100 km north.

YABUKI-CHO: The Salvation Army Japan’s Major Kenji Fujii and Captain Kazuyuki Ishikawa met with the city’s mayor. They learned 52% of the area’s water has been restored, and they have plenty of food and drinking water. However, fuel and daily necessities are in short supply. The Salvation Army left with the town all the supplies they brought, but they have not received a request for additional help.

IWAKI CITY: Team members visited Iwaki City, which is just over 30km outside of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Station. On March 24 they distributed 500 hot meals and 6,000 bottles of water. However, as food and supplies are becoming more readily available, Iwaki City officials have not requested additional support from the Army.

KESENNUMA : Kesennuma lies 120 km north of Sendai along the coast line, and the city is badly damaged. The Salvation Army is sending two teams to distribute food and necessities April 12-15. They expect to give out 1,000 meals and 5,000 bottles of water, as well as candy for the 100 children in the area.

RIKUZEN-TAKADA : Rikuzen-Takada also lies on the coast, 30 km north-east from Kesennuma, and was badly damaged by the tsuname. A team is presently distributing hundreds of hot meals and water. They are looking into further ways they may assist.

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FedEx Lends Their Support to Japan Relief

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.

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Celebs Use Star Power to Support Salvation Army’s Japan Relief Work

Monday, March 28, 2011

“Ame ni Mo Makezu,” is one of Japan’s most famous poems. Roughly translated, the title means “don’t be defeated by the rain.” Its inspirational message encourages people to have hope and fight the world’s heartache by standing up for those in need.

Jackie Chan and dozens of Hong Kong singers and actors have adapted this poem into a new song, “Succumb Not to Sorrow,” which will be the theme of their upcoming Japan relief concert. Love Without Borders 3/11 Candelight Gala will be held on April 1 in Hong Kong with proceeds from the event going to The Salvation Army’s relief efforts.

But Jackie Chan isn’t the only celebrity using his star power to help Japan. We reported last week that Britney Spears donated 2 tickets to her Sunday performance taping for Good Morning America. California radio station Wild 94.9 decided to auction them off and donate the proceeds to The Salvation Army’s disaster efforts. We heard the winning bidder put up more than $1,000 for the tickets, which will go straight to supporting Japan!

For our latest Japan relief update, click here.

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Salvation Army in Japan Considers Long-Term Disaster Response

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Our emergency teams in Japan tell us disaster response is going well and that most areas in need of assistance have been reached.

They’re still providing necessities such as food and water in Sendai and also in Yabuki-cho, both of which are near Fukushima but outside the exclusion zone around the nuclear power plant. Yabuki-cho seems to be one of the few areas not yet reached by government help.

Some areas hit harder by the disaster are still not accessible, but our workers in Japan believe other NGO’s are also not being allowed into these parts. The exclusion zone around the Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant is still in place and local reports say the situation is improving.

The Salvation Army in Korea has provided bottled water to Japan, and The Salvation Army World Services Organization (SAWSO) in the USA is organizing a delivery of blankets. They’ve also offered to send food packages if needed.

As many of you know, there has been a generous financial response to The Salvation Army’s Japan Disaster Appeal! Our Japan Territory believes funds already available in-country will cover the costs of the current response and that money raised from around the world will enable a medium to long-term response. The territory is considering building temporary accommodations and providing household goods and equipment, but these plans are still at the early stages.

Salvation Army in Japan Considers Long-Term Disaster Response

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