Introducing Garbage Bag Couture

Friday, November 5, 2010

Go to your closet and pick out your nicest dress. Now throw it on the floor because you can’t be caught dead in that at tonight’s event hosted by The Salvation Army of Pittsburgh.

Forget sequins and silk. Trash bags are all the rage this evening at The 9th Annual Garbage Bag Gala where you’ll find “Pittsburgh’s classiest guys and girls” gathered for “this season’s trashiest event.”

The gala is a unique fundraiser to raise money for homeless families living at The Salvation Army’s East Liberty Family Caring Center. Instead of spending money on a new outfit, partygoers donate the funds to The Salvation Army where they’ll be used to support family center residents. Oh ya, and as a fun twist, attendees create evening attire out of plastic garbage bags!

For more information, find the Gala on Facebook (The 2010 Garbage Bag Gala) or visit their website at garbagebaggala.com.

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NFL Announces Salvation Army as First to Own and Operate Youth Education Town

Friday, October 8, 2010

BIG NEWS!!!

Dallas Cowboys greats Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman announced that The Salvation Army will be the owner and operator of the newly announced Super Bowl XLV Youth Education Town (YET) in Arlington, TX.

The $2 million project will target homeless and at-risk youth in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, specifically those from neighborhoods that suffer from higher crime, drug, and gang activity levels.

The Salvation Army is honored to be a part of this initiative and have the opportunity to expand service to the community.

What exactly will the center have to offer? Everything from a fitness area and athletic fields to computer labs, music instruction, film and video production and more. Adult continuing education and drug prevention programs will also be offered, along with an expansion of The Salvation Army’s emergency financial assistance program, food pantry, and after-school programs. Learn more about NFL YETs here.

Officials say they even hope to finish it before the 2012 Super Bowl! Get more details at Dallas Morning News.

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Indiana Salvation Army Receives Grant Support for Domestic Abuse Victims

Thursday, September 30, 2010

During July 2008-July 2009, 1,574 victims of domestic abuse were denied emergency shelter in Indiana due to lack of space, according to the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence. During that same time period 53 deaths in the state were caused by domestic abuse.

Donna*, an abuse victim and mother of three, feared for her life but found it hard to escape from her husband’s escalating violence because she didn’t know where to go.

The Salvation Army of Indiana is doing everything they can to make sure victims find safe shelter, and they’ve just received a $30,000 grant from The Indianapolis Foundation that will help in their efforts.

The funds will support their Emergency Bed Space program run by The Salvation Army’s Women’s and Children’s Shelter, which coordinates space availability at area shelters and makes sure every spot is filled. The grant will help cover everything from meals, linens, and mattresses to housing costs and more.

Through the Emergency Bed Space program, Donna* was able to find room at a shelter for her and her children where they stayed for several months before saving up enough money for a place of their own (read her testimony here).

Since 2003, hundreds of families and individuals with stories like Donna’s* have found shelter and new beginnings through The Salvation Army Indiana’s Emergency Bed Space program, and The Indianapolis Foundation’s generous grant will help ensure hundreds more continue to do so.

Read the full story about the grant award and The Emergency Bed Space program at The Salvation Army Indiana’s website http://salvationarmyindiana.org/.

*Name changed to protect confidentiality

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News by the Numbers

Friday, September 24, 2010

Happy Friday! Since it’s the end of the week, we’re keeping it simple with an easy-to-read list of news by the numbers. These curt quantities represent a mix…

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Anonymous Donation Gives Homeless Children a Special Summer Break

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Teonnia, Shon, Gladys, Annette, Andrew, Diamond, Jynxy and about a dozen other children traveled from Charlotte, NC to our nation’s capitol this July for a summer vacation. Amid the crowds of Washington, DC tourists the group of 18 kids blended in among the masses of other visitors, probably looking like the many school groups that make annual summer treks to the city. However, the story behind the young travelers’ trips was certainly unique.

The kids are residents of The Salvation Army Center of Hope in Charlotte, NC, a homeless shelter for women and children that currently houses more than 300 people. Normally these kids would not have the opportunity to take a vacation as their parents strive just to find housing and provide food for their families, but the generosity of an anonymous donor made it possible for the children to escape from life’s challenges for a short while and just have fun being kids.

The children enjoyed simple pleasures, like staying in a hotel and eating out at restaurants, as well as experienced the unique history and character of Washington, DC. They toured the national monuments, viewed exhibits at some of DC’s most popular museums and even took a boat ride (a first for at least one child) down the Potomac.

To top off their adventure, the group even met with their U.S. Representatives for a personal and candid discussion!

The Charlotte Observer ran an interesting story about the trip with several quotes from the kids in an article called, “Away from the shelter to a Washington vacation,” which you can read by clicking here.

The contributions of the kind anonymous donor made it possible for The Salvation Army to provide these kids not only with shelter and food they receive at home in Charlotte, but also encouragement, inspiration, and a unique educational opportunity through this invaluable experience. In fact, all donations, regardless of size or amount, from generous Salvation Army supporters across the country help us serve those in need every day, and this story is just one of countless others in which lives have been affected for the better. For more information about contributing monetary support or gifts-in-kind to The Salvation Army, visit our website at www.salvationarmyusa.org and www.satruck.org.

You can also learn about the many services offered by The Salvation Army of Charlotte at their website www.salvationarmycharlotte.org/.

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Last Week to Vote and Help Refresh Detroit!

Monday, July 26, 2010

There’s only one week left to help The Salvation Army ‘Refresh’ Detroit, so be sure to get your votes in (remember, 1 vote per cause each day)!

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit has a great idea to use $250,000 of Pepsi Refresh Project grant funds to serve members of their community who are most in need. They’ve set up a plan to provide an additional 55,254 meals and 1,000 more nights of shelter to homeless and at-risk individuals and families. You can find all the details of the proposal at http://www.refresheverything.com/salmich.

The Salvation Army of Detroit is one of the top organizations in the running and needs the support of online voters to earn the grant. If you’d like to support The Salvation Army’s work in supporting families and individuals in need, just follow these easy steps:

1. Visit their proposal page under the ‘Food and Shelter’ category at http://www.refresheverything.com/salmich.
2. Click ‘Vote for This Idea’
3. Follow the prompts

Thanks for your support!

For more information about how The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit is “doing the most good,” visit their website at www.salmich.org or find them on Facebook and Twitter @salmich.

For additional background on the Pepsi Refresh Project, click here.

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Beat the Heat with The Salvation Army

Thursday, July 8, 2010

This summer’s scorching heat is putting a strain on communities far and wide. New York, New Jersey, and parts of Washington, DC went into blackout this week as utility companies struggle to keep up with energy demand, and some residents remain without power. Even zoos and wildlife centers are taking extra cautious care of their animals during this time – it’s reported that sick seals in New Jersey had to be cared for with tubs filled with ice cubes! And tragically, the heat wave has already claimed the lives of several people.

As sweltering temperatures reach record levels, people across the country are searching for ways to escape the oppressive weather. During this time of need The Salvation Army is actively helping afflicted communities beat the heat and protect against the dangers of the hot spell.

In many areas facing the most extreme temperatures, The Salvation Army has opened “cooling stations” to provide refuge for the homeless, low income individuals, and others who don’t have functional cooling units at home. With temperatures reaching the triple digits along the east coast, The Salvation Army of Greater New York is helping provide shelter, supplies and assistance as the state opens doors to 480 cooling facilities! Local Salvation Army units in Massachusetts, Texas, Michigan and several states in between have also reported opening emergency cooling stations. While shelters provide vulnerable individuals and families with rest, cold water, recreational opportunities, and even relief from driving up their own utility costs at home, Salvation Army cooling stations also provide an escape from life-threatening circumstances. A Pennsylvania resident named Lisy, a diabetic, said she and her 3 grandchildren sought refuge at The Salvation Army so that her medical condition would not put her and her family at risk as a result of the overbearing heat inside her residence.

The Salvation Army is also collecting and distributing water to keep people hydrated. In Tucson, Arizona, The Salvation Army is partnering with local business Naughton’s for “Operation Chill-Out,” a city-wide drive during the summer months to collect bottled water for the homeless, as well as items like sunscreen and lip balm. One generous donation in Kansas City enabled The Salvation Army to distribute more than 200 bottles of water around the city, offering much needed relief to citizens on an ‘Ozone Alert Day.’

Even fans and air conditioning units are being distributed to those in need in what some Salvation Army community centers are calling their ‘Beat the Heat’ campaign. With the help of the local Wal-Mart, The Salvation Army in Knoxville is providing box fans and AC units, as well as helping pay electric bills, for those most vulnerable to the heat, and The Salvation Army in Oklahoma City has partnered with local energy company OG&E for their own drive. The Salvation Army in Cleveland is also in the midst of collecting fans, A/C units, and monetary donations to provide relief to members of their community.

If you would like to help us provide for others during these very hot months, or if summer’s boiling temperatures have left you in need, contact your local Salvation Army or search our website at www.salvationarmyusa.org for one nearest you.

And while you probably are already aware of these common sense tips, we’re going to say it anyway: Help yourself stay cool by wearing light colors and shade such as hats or sunglasses, drink lots of water, and avoid too much outdoor activity when possible. Also, help others stay safe by checking up on elderly or ill family, neighbors, and friends!

In the meantime, we’ll be crossing our fingers for a cold spell soon!

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On July 4, Family “Doing the Most Good” in Honor of Son

Friday, July 2, 2010

Fireworks , picnics, and its historical significance make July 4th a special holiday, but a Green Bay family will be recognizing the day in a unique way – they will be serving those in need in honor of the legacy of their son Ben.

Ben died about 3 years ago in an ATV accident. Just before his passing, he gave his food to a homeless man, an act of compassion that Ben’s dad said characterized the young boy.

Carrying on “Ben’s Wish” to help others, his parents Peter and Becky have made it a priority to give back to those in need. This weekend they will be at Green Bay’s Fourth of July celebration to collect food and monetary donations that will restock the shelves of The Salvation Army’s food pantry, helping provide for the area homeless and children in need of meal assistance.

Read the full story of how the family is helping The Salvation Army “do the most good” in honor of Ben at WBAY Action 2 News.

Peter and Becky’s strength and caring hearts are truly inspiring. Hopefully others will be encouraged by them to find an opportunity to serve others this weekend as well.

Happy July 4th!

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Vote Now and Help The Salvation Army ‘Refresh’ Detroit

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The new Pepsi Refresh Project is on the lookout “for people, businesses, and non-profits with ideas that will have a positive impact. Look around your community and think about how you want to change it.”

The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit has stepped up to the challenge, and they are now in the running this month for a $250,000 grant for their great idea! If awarded the $250,000, they will to use the funds to provide an additional 155,000 meals and 1,000 more nights of shelter for Detroit’s residents in need. You can find all the details of their proposal at http://www.refresheverything.com/salmich.

Now The Salvation Army of Detroit needs the support of online voters to help their idea come to fruition. The Pepsi Refresh Project awards the grant to the proposal that has the most votes, with people being allowed to cast one vote per project each day during the month of July. If you’d like to support The Salvation Army Detroit’s grant proposal, just follow these easy steps:

1. Visit their proposal page under the ‘Food and Shelter’ category at http://www.refresheverything.com/salmich.
2. Click ‘Vote for This Idea’
3. Follow the prompts

Don’t forget, you can vote once a day during the entire month of July! It’s an easy way that you can help make a difference for those in need.

Each month, the Pepsi Refresh Project awards up to $1.3 million in grants to proposals that receive the most online votes.

For more information about how The Salvation Army of Metro Detroit is “doing the most good,” visit their website at www.salmich.org or find them on Facebook and Twitter @salmich.

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Salvation Army Kitchen Cooks Up New Culinary Grads!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Salvation Army’s School of Culinary Arts in Chattanooga, Tennessee is celebrating the first graduating class of its program! As of result of their training, three students have all successfully secured jobs in the local area, and two of them have transitioned from homelessness to permanent housing.

This culinary arts program is different than your average cooking school in that it is designed to equip local homeless and low income persons with the skills they need to thrive in the food service industry, empowering them to overcome homelessness and unemployment.

Chef Terry Epps, a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu College, runs the 12-week program in which students get hands on training in environmentally friendly agriculture, meal preparation, and even resume and interview tips. The culinary schools wraps ups with a two-week internship in a local restaurant kitchen.

The Chattanoogan featured the following from the newspaper’s conversation with Chef Epps and a program graduate named Jasmine:

“The students are learning the skills necessary to work in kitchens which prepare daily staples such as hamburgers, as well as, more formal kitchens where complex, multiple course meals are the norm” said Chef Terry Epps. Though the focus is on marketable skills, Chef Epps has noticed additional benefits. “When my students put on their uniforms I see a boost in their confidence. They are uplifted and excited to learn and change their lives.”

“The School is proof that there is hope out there,” said Jasmine, a formerly homeless mother of two small children. “I want to change my life for the better and this program has made that possible.”

You can watch first hand interviews of Chef Epps and Jasmine HERE in a news story run by WDEF 12 about the life changing program.

Congratulations to the new graduates, and best wishes at your new jobs! We hope many others will be inspired to take advantage of this Salvation Army program. In fact, although the School of Culinary Arts is only able to take 5 students per class, there are already 20 applicants for the next class in July!

For more information about the Culinary Program and services offered by The Chattanooga Salvation Army, find them on Facebook, Twitter, and their website www.csarmy.org.

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