The Salvation Army mobilizes to offer meals, comfort in Oklahoma, Arkansas flooding

By: Cindy Fuller

The Salvation Army partnered with Tulsa County, Oklahoma, the weekend of June 1-2 to stage a fixed feeding site in a neighborhood hard hit by flooding from the Arkansas River. About half of the area was submerged, water was up to roof lines for several blocks and hundreds were displaced.

Residents began returning Saturday, June 1, and The Salvation Army was there. Two canteens (mobile feeding units), two rapid response units (catering trucks), and a Salvation Army kitchen delivered meals, water, cleaning supplies and hygiene kits.

As the word spread of the Army’s fixed feeding site in Sand Springs, volunteers, survivors and first responders arrived for a lunch of hot dogs, chips, a dessert and a cold bottle of water. For some, it was the first break they’d had since early morning.

By Wednesday, June 5, Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services teams in northeast Oklahoma had served more than 6,900 meals, 8,800 drinks and 3,500 snacks. Canteens and rapid response units were moving through Sand Springs, Bixby, Leonard, Muskogee and West Tulsa. The Salvation Army also assisted flood relief efforts in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

Trained personnel from Conway, Fayetteville, Hot Springs and Mountain Home, Arkansas; and Chickasha, Enid, Lawton and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, provided support and encouragement.

Salvation Army partners Webco Industries and National Charity League provided volunteers; the doTERRA Helping Hands Foundation, comfort kits; Newton Wall Co., paper products; and Reddy Ice, ice and an ice container.

Cindy Fuller is communications director for the Arkansas-Oklahoma Division.