This week, The Salvation Army held the grand opening and a ribbon cutting for The Shield of Hope Center; the nation’s first emergency homeless assessment and rapid-response center addressing the needs of families in crisis. This is a partnership with the City of Chicago, and expands upon the Army’s full range of services to Chicago’s homeless population.
As a part of National Volunteer Week, we are recognizing the impact that volunteers make with The Salvation Army. This blog features an article originally printed in Central Connection – a newsletter for The Salvation Army’s Central Territory (read the entire newsletter here), and highlights recent stories about volunteers and staff in the wake of 2017’s record-setting disastrous weather.
When life-long Salvationists and Central Territorial Headquarters employee Blythe Marinelli developed an interest in becoming an emergency disaster services (EDS) volunteer with her husband, Jack, it quickly turned into a passion. In the past year and a half they discovered a ministry through which they receive much personal satisfaction while serving others in God’s name.
After completing the training required to be certified and registered as EDS volunteers, the Marinellis’ first experience was helping the Metropolitan Division when the Fox River flooded. Their second EDS experience took them far from home when they joined the first hurricane-relief team deployed by the territory to Puerto Rico last fall. Continue reading “Emergency Disaster Services Volunteers Are There When Needed”
This blog post has been provided by Linda Reiter, our volunteer resource manager. She is a certified volunteer administrator and has managed volunteer programs for nearly two decades. She is passionate about engaging volunteers in meaningful ways, and energized by volunteers who bring hope, kindness and compassion to those in need.
National Volunteer Week is April 15-21 this year, and provides a reminder of how valuable volunteers are – especially those who take time out to support The Salvation Army. National Volunteer Week was started by Points of Light to encourage people and organizations to recognize and thank volunteers who lend their time, talent, voice and support to causes they care about in their community.
As the largest social service organization in the world, The Salvation Army could not do all that we do to serve our communities without the help of our most treasured asset – the volunteers who work alongside us every day of the year. Continue reading “The Salvation Army Celebrates National Volunteer Week”
This blog post has been provided by Tamara Draper, Senior Account Executive at Accuity, Inc. Nearly 30 years ago, Draper and her children stayed at the Salvation Army Evangeline Booth Lodge for a short period of time. She has spent the past 27 years giving back and supporting The Salvation Army.
Thirty years ago my children and I spent some time at The Salvation Army’s Evangeline Booth Lodge. I had been through a divorce that left us homeless. I was too humiliated to tell my family and to ask others for help, so we started living out of my car. Thankfully a friend stepped in and made some calls on my behalf, and after three days, someone from the Army showed up and took us in. Within a month, they provided some financial help that allowed us to find an apartment and start over.
The Salvation Army has always met people where they are in order to lift them up and help them onto a path of joy and hope. This includes ministries to those who are battling substance abuse, leaving human-trafficking situations, and living on the streets. Recently, the Army has brought its Fatherhood in Action program to the Cook County Jail, helping fathers build better relationships with their children and the children’s mothers.
The Triangle is a spot on Lower Wacker Drive where hundreds of people sleep every night on stacks of cardboard, torn-up mattresses, or piles of newspapers. Just yards away, drug dealers and prostitutes sell their wares – most of the time to the Triangle residents. The Salvation Army Mobile Feeding and Homeless Outreach Unit makes at least one stop a day at this location to hand out food, offer social services, and help individuals leave the street if they choose.