The Salvation Army stands in the gap in trying times

Chattanooga, Tennessee: “The pantry shelves are stocked, and our hearts are full of gratitude,” The Salvation Army in Chattanooga posted to Facebook on Sept. 19. Through their annual Build-A-Bag campaign, members of Lookout Mountain Presbyterian Church PCA collected over 250 food bags to be distributed at the Army’s Social Services office. As the demand for emergency food assistance has increased, these supplies have become more critical than ever before. Thanks to the generosity of Lookout Mountain Church, hundreds of families in need will be supplied with groceries. “A special shout out to our youngest, and most energetic, pantry volunteer Ethan for helping to load the bags into the truck!”

Rome, Georgia: To help better organize donations in the Rome Family Store warehouse, retired Salvation Army officer Major Loyd Kerns (in khaki), corps employee Richard Bearden (white T-shirt) and volunteer A.J. Johnson (red T-shirt) team up to assemble pallet racks. Each rack is eight feet long by about four feet wide; the men assembled enough to fill 17 bays or storage locations with a capacity of at least 34 pallets. They’ll accommodate all kinds of donations – from furniture and bric-a-brac to clothing and non-perishable foods. “This enables us to keep a neater, more organized warehouse, which facilitates a more efficient managing of the donations,” said Lieutenant Tim Blevins, corps officer. The racks were donated by Coin Acceptors Inc. of Marietta, Georgia.

Richmond, Virginia: School looks different this year because of COVID-19 and virtual learning, but The Salvation Army’s commitment to safely serving the youth of the community remains. Its Facilitated Learning Center has four socially distant classroom with 10 students per room. Children follow their academic schedule, followed by after-school activities after completing their schoolwork. Breakfast, lunch and snacks are provided daily, thanks to the support of Feed More and the Richmond Public Schools. The corps said in a Sept. 18 Facebook posting, “It takes a village, but together we are doing the most good to provide a bright future for these children.”

San Antonio, Texas: Santex Idealease Inc. donated the use of one of its trucks for The Salvation Army Angel Tree program in San Antonio. The truck will be used to pick up and transport toys, bicycles and clothes to the distribution center. Last year, the San Antonio command provided 59,000 toys to local children who otherwise would not have received a gift for Christmas. This year, The Salvation Army expects an increase in the number of families seeking assistance through Angel Tree.

Charlotte, North Carolina: In these times of COVID-19 and virtual learning, “Power Hour,” an after-school initiative of The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Charlotte, is more important than ever. Lincoln Financial Foundation this summer awarded a $25,000 grant to support the program, which helps children build skills collaboration, knowledge construction, assessment and analysis of information, critical thinking, problem solving, and effective written and verbal communication. “As most of the students in our community are learning virtually, the ‘Power Hour’ homework assistance program at our Clubs is critical,” said Marty Clary, executive director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Charlotte. “Thanks to Lincoln Financial Foundation’s generous gift, our members are able to use technology and work collaboratively with their peers and Club staff to develop academically. These are difficult times for our youth, but this donation to such an important program will ensure our members are staying on grade level and are well prepared for the next stage in their educational pursuits.”

Atlanta, Georgia: Every time someone purchases a pair of Bombas athletic socks, the company donates a pair to a person in need. The Salvation Army Metropolitan Atlanta Area Command is among the latest beneficiaries, receiving more than 35,000 pairs of socks to distribute. According to the company’s Facebook page: “Bombas was born out of a mission to help those in need. We’re committed to making our community where we live and work a better place with every pair of socks we sell. These two ideas are the pillars behind Bombas.” In its own Facebook posting, the Atlanta Command says, “Thank you, Bombas, for this generous donation!”

Danville, Kentucky: Salvation Army corps members in Danville on Sept. 12 prepare for a new sermon series beginning the following day, Sunday: “Great Is Thy Faithfulness.”