Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Captains Mary Poff and Cyndi Shiels looked around what had been the residence of the Poff family for the past five years. The home, which is the parsonage for The Salvation Army, had fared better than many in the subdivision when the F5 tornado made its way through Joplin, MO. It sustained extensive damage but was still standing.
The two women were prepared for much of what they saw—broken glass and debris everywhere. Adoor had been torn from its hinges and blown down the hallway. Glass shards protruded from the furniture.
Then suddenly, in the middle of all this damage, they were greeted by a dog. She had evidently sought refuge following the tornado, gaining access through the damaged back door. The dog appeared to have sustained no injuries other than cuts on her feet.
The two captains completed their tour of the home and were ready to leave. But what about the dog? Neither of them felt they could leave her there. Feeling a responsibility to care for this animal, Captain Cyndi decided to take the dog home with her until they could find the owner.
The next day, Captains Cyndi and Amos Shiels took the dog to their vet. The vet discovered the dog had a microchip, and the Shiels learned the dog’s name was Maggie. They were eventually able to make contact with the dog’s owner.
The owner, Jennifer, was relieved to learn Maggie had been found and was being cared for. But tears came as she shared that they had not been home when the tornado struck and their house had been destroyed. Jennifer went on to explain that she found herself suddenly unemployed as her workplace had been destroyed, and it would be 6-12 months before they would be able to rebuild their home. In the meantime, she didn’t know where they were going to live and couldn’t take the dog. The Shiels assured Jennifer that Maggie could stay with them for a few weeks.
Jennifer called later to say that a friend had offered to keep Maggie for the next year while her family rebuilds. Soon Maggie will be relocated to her new temporary home in Chicago.
The Salvation Army has been responding to disasters across the country, and around the world, for over 100 years to serve the victims, first responders and volunteers. Finding missing pets has not been one of the services given by the Army, but Maggie was in the right place at the right time and received help from the officers who found her. In turn, her owners received peace of mind about her safety and care during this time of uncertainty as they begin to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives and start over again.
Monday, June 20, 2011
Article published with permission from author Allison Roorda of the Faribault Daily News
Members of the Divine Mercy Catholic School student council, from left to right, Kelsey Novak, Shelby Meyer, Patrick Swenson, Zachary Schwab, Brendan Trump and Garrett Johnson. (Allison Roorda/Daily News)
When the sixth-grade members of the Divine Mercy Catholic School student council in Minnesota set out to raise money for the victims of tornadoes and flooding in the south, their goal was $700.
After several weeks and many different opportunities for fundraising, they ended up with $1,705.11.
“We just decided that it would be cool to help the tornado and flood victims down south,” said Kelsey Novak, president of the student council.
For weeks the six senior student council members worked on a variety of ways to raise the money, said Betsy Thomas.
“One of the reasons was we’ve been praying for these people since those devastating tornadoes hit down south,” said Thomas, who teaches sixth grade and also acts as the student council adviser at DMCS. “They just felt like they wanted to do more than just pray.”
The students were adamant about their contributions.
“As a Christian school, one of our biggest duties as Christians is to help others,” said Shelby Meyer, secretary of the student council. “So when we got the chance, we took it.”
The students got permission to take up collections at student Masses and at the dress rehearsal and performance of the annual school concert.
“It was a long two weeks of raising money,” Meyer said. “I think we spent at least half a day just running around the school, hanging up flyers and stuff.”
One of the major fundraisers ended up being the school’s Dress Down Day.
“We do this all year long,” Thomas said. “For a dollar the kids can be out of dress code. The kids decided they had a $2 dress down fee, and many people donated even more than $2. The class that contributed the most got a dress down pass they can use any time for two weeks.”
Normally, any money collected for DMCS’s Dress Down Days goes to various charities. The student council members decided to donate money they raised with their own Dress Down Day to the Salvation Army, according to Thomas.
Friday, June 10, 2011
The Salvation Army
PO Box 21787
St. Louis, MO 63109
Please designate the gift “Joplin Tornado”
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Thanks to Domino’s Pizza for making a $6,000 donation to our disaster relief efforts in Joplin.
The Salvation Army has been providing emergency and spiritual care to Joplin families who have lost their homes, possessions and jobs, and Domino’s donation will help us continue our efforts. Presenting the check in front of the tornado-ravaged Domino’s location are (L-R) Max Spencer, volunteer; Jeff Pedrotty, spokesperson for Domino’s St. Louis, Major Jerold Forney, Salvation Army Incident Commander; Gary Bugajski, Vice President Domino’s St. Louis; Chris Moreno, Honorary Fire Fighter and Anthony McBaine, Halltown Fire Chief.
Thursday, June 9, 2011
In western Massachusetts where many communities are recovering from the destructive June 1 tornadoes, the disaster has caused a roller coaster of emotions.
While volunteers walked door to door with hot meals, they reported an elderly individual approached one of them, collapsed in their arms, and sobbed, “I just don’t know what to do.”
Around the same time, a 7 year-old girl walked into one of the local Salvation Army centers to donate an envelope marked ‘Lemonade Stand Money’ with a smiley face, which she said she had earned to “help the people in her neighborhood who got hurt.”
The Salvation Army continues to serve the many needs of these communities and is working closely with the office of the Springfield, MA mayor during this process.
As the transition to the long term recovery phase of this disaster takes place, The Salvation Army will provide vouchers for clothes, groceries, hygiene products, and children’s supplies for those affected. Teams are being sent to help the elderly and disabled who are not able to clear their yards of debris.We’ll also continue to serve those in the disaster area as long as needed to make sure everyone has enough food, water, clothing and shelter.
Since the immediate hours following the western Massachusetts tornadoes, The Salvation Army has:
* Served 16,400 people, including 10,000 hot meals in 29 different locations and these services continue.
* Used 5 emergency feeding vehicles to manage the response
* Provided 100 cots for survivors in shelters,
* Mobilized 85 specially trained EDS volunteers and a handful of officers to serve the 4 hardest hit communities of Westfield, Springfield, Brimfield and Monson.
* Provided emotional and spiritual care to over 1,000 people in the first 48 hours.
To support The Salvation Army’s relief efforts in Massachusetts, call 1-800-SAL-ARMY or click here to donate and designate your gift for “Massachusetts Tornado Relief.” The Salvation Army in Massachusetts says their greatest need is financial donations. They have not expressed a need for clothing donations or volunteers at this time.
Monday, June 6, 2011
The Salvation Army has joined with The Bridge to become a part of the Multiple Agency Resource Center (M.A.R.C.) for Joplin disaster relief. The resource center consists of various charity organizations and local businesses offering services for storm victims. The M.A.R.C. offers the opportunity to access many services at one location including help with: housing, medical needs, debris removal, misc. supplies, counseling, emergency funding, new driver’s license, I.D., car title, unemployment, and much more. According to J.J. Travis of The Red Cross, “There is something here for every person affected by this disaster.”
Upon arrival at the M.A.R.C. survivors will go to The Red Cross to register for needed services. It’s helpful to have a form of identification and the address of the affected residence, but it is not required to receive assistance. Continuing support is available and provided based on the long term needs of individual survivors. The M.A.R.C. is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily and is located at 3405 S. Hammonds Blvd, Joplin, MO.
* Housing Assistance
* Debris Removal
* Clothing & Hygienic Supplies
* Drivers License, I.D., Car Title
* Emergency Funding
* Social Security Benefits
* Volunteer Placement
* Educational Resources
* Veterans Affairs
* Disability Services
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
[The Salvation Army’s supply center offers baby items and other necessities.]
The Salvation Army’s supply center offers baby items and other necessities.
Many families and individuals affected by the devastating string of tornadoes have lost much, if not all, of their belongings. In Joplin, MO, The Salvation Army offers them a place where they can go to begin to rebuild.
We’ve opened a center at the former Salvation Army thrift store located at 7th & Kentucky where we’re providing survivors with emergency services and supplies.
It’s open daily from 9:00am – 5:00pm to the general public, particularly those affected by the May 22nd tornado. Supplies are rationed based on family size and need, but there is an abundance of supplies, and applicants are involved in picking out what they will be able to use. There are also programs available to find help for those who need medical attention and long term housing.
[Joplin, MO emergency disaster supply center]
There is no set limit for the number of times people may come in for supplies; the process is based simply off of need.
It’s just one way we’re helping those in need get back on their feet and have hope for tomorrow.
If you’d like to donate to The Salvation Army’s ongoing tornado relief efforts, visit www.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY. You can also click here for more ways to help.
Friday, May 27, 2011
As of 12pm Wednesday, The Salvation Army had served more than 16,000 hot meals to Joplin tornado survivors.
The following information represents The Salvation Army’s efforts in Joplin, as of 12:00 PM Wednesday, May 26:
* Served 16,692 hot meals and 2,566 snacks and 6,170 drinks.
* Provided 6 Mobile Feeding Units (Canteens), including units from Springfield, Kirksville, and Sedalia, Missouri, Pittsburg and Lawrence, Kansas and Tulsa, Oklahoma,
* A Satellite Communications truck is in place and handling phone, computer and internet communications.
* Delivered emotional/spiritual care to 200 people and prayers have been offered with 36
* Initiated emergency Social Services in multiple locations.
* 8 Salvation Army officers (pastors), 13 employees and 103 volunteers have served 2,002.5 hours.
Locations of feeding stations
Feeding operations are taking place at the following locations:
* The Salvation Army Joplin Corps Community Center, 320 E. 8th Street, Joplin, MO
* St. John’s Hospital at 26th & Maiden, Joplin, MO
* 2502 S. Main St., Joplin, MO. The “Oasis Tent” is meant to serve as a location for community members to come together in a sheltered place and receive “One stop service” with food, water, spiritual and emotional care, minor medical care and other basic services.
Mobile Feeding Sites
Mobile kitchens from the following locations are roving throughout the disaster area, providing—as much as possible—regularly scheduled routes to offer food and beverages to responders and survivors: Kirksville, Sedalia, and Springfield, Missouri, and Lawrence, Kansas.
Other Emergency Disaster Services Ongoing in Joplin:
* The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services relief teams in Joplin; are recognized by the Federal Government and can access roads and areas currently closed off to the general public.
* The Salvation Army is using an all-terrain vehicle and mobilizing “foot soldiers” to go to the people to minister, provide food and bottled water to those who are in need.
* An Emergency Disaster Services ‘Store’ is now located at the old Joplin thrift store on 7th Street and opened Thursday morning at 9 a.m. After receiving vouchers from on-site social workers, survivors may “shop” for items such as clothing, diapers, toiletries, etc.
* Sprint donated 1,500 prepaid cell phones.
* The Charlie Daniels Band is scheduled to play a concert at Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri on Saturday with $5.00 of each ticket sold going to The Salvation Army.
* A Kansas City Advisory Board member secured several generous donations from Sam’s Club including approximately 8 pallets of Gatorade, plus gloves and shopping carts that will be used at the EDS store. Sam’s Club also donated one freezer truck and one 45 foot refrigerator truck.
Kansas City’s Response to Sedalia, Missouri, Tornado
On Wednesday, May 25 a tornado hit the town of Sedalia, Missouri. The Sedalia Salvation Army’s team was already on site in Joplin. Within 1 hour of the tornado in Sedalia, a mobile kitchen from Kansas City was on its way to aid Sedalia.
To donate to The Salvation Army’s relief efforts, please visit www.salvationarmyusa.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY. You can also find more information about giving here.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
The Salvation Army has four mobile feeding kitchens serving in Joplin,Missouri, and each is capable of serving thousands of meals per day.If you’d like to donate to our relief efforts, please visit www.salvationarmyusa.org, call 1-800-SAL-ARMY, or click here.
Take a look at the first photos of a canteen from Tulsa, OK that is serving at St. John’s hospital in Joplin, MO. Your continued prayers for survivors and relief workers are greatly appreciated.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
We’ve received tons of messages and comments from people wanting to organize donation drives and ship items to recent tornado survivors. If this is you, please read the following important message from FEMA!
Joplin, Missouri is actually overwhelmed with unsolicited donations, like clothes, toys and household items. This can lead to what disaster relief personnel call the “secondary disaster,” in which valuable, life sustaining resources are redirected to sort, transport, store, and distribute items that may not meet the needs of survivors.
Read on to learn how your support doesn’t become “too much of a good thing” for those in need, and please consider giving monetary donations through the options listed here:
KANSAS CITY, MO— To help better manage the outpouring of support for Joplin, Missouri tornado survivors, disaster recovery experts have established some simple ways to help, whether volunteering or donating resources.
The Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offer those who are impacted or just wanting to help the following advice:
Volunteer or Donate
The easiest way to help is to call 2-1-1 in most areas in Missouri to volunteer time or make a donation. Cash is the best because it offers voluntary agencies the most flexibility in obtaining the most-needed resources. Confirm what is needed BEFORE taking action!
Donate in-kind goods that are specifically requested or needed by recognized organizations. Unsolicited donated goods such as used clothing, miscellaneous household items, and mixed or perishable foodstuffs require helping agencies to redirect valuable resources away from providing services to sort, package, transport, warehouse, and distribute items that may not meet the needs of disaster survivors.
Confirm the needs by contacting the voluntary organization of your choice before starting to collect.
If you have a quantity of a given item or class of item to donate, and you need help in determining which organizations to give to, you can make your offer through http://www.aidmatrixnetwork.org/fema after this, just click on Missouri.