Cooking for the Community

The Salvation Army of Texas

Partners Provide Support to Salvation Army Response

Dallas, TX (June 8, 2016) – The Salvation Army in Texas continues to provide widespread response following flooding in and around the state, particularly in Brazoria, Fort Bend, and Montgomery Counties.

Eight Salvation Army disaster teams operating mobile kitchens are working around the clock to deliver much needed meals, drinks, cleaning supplies, and encouragement to those affected by flooding. Trained disaster crews have traveled from as far as Plainview, San Angelo, and Austin, to provide support to the work being done by local Salvation Army teams from the Houston area.

“We continue to see conditions improving in most areas of the state but there are still areas of concern along the Brazos River,” said Alvin Migues, Emergency Disaster Services Director, for The Salvation Army in Texas. “We are monitoring the situation and responding in communities that are just now seeing the water starting to recede.”

Several national and local partners have come forward to provide much needed support to the ongoing response effort. Target has generously donated $100,000 in Target GiftCards to be distributed by The Salvation Army in the hardest hit areas, while Walmart has provided supplies and food in various cities. AmeriCares, an emergency response and global health organization, have donated four truckloads of bottled water, given by Nestlé Waters North America, and comfort kits that have arrived in Southeast Texas for families in need. Mercy Chefs, a Virginia based non-profit, disaster relief organization has deployed their team of professional chefs to feed survivors and first responders. Additionally, local partnerships from companies including H-E-B, Chick-fil-A, and Boys & Girls Club, have provided meals and much needed volunteers.

Brazoria County

The Salvation Army of Freeport is coordinating response efforts with three mobile kitchens, a field kitchen operated by Mercy Chefs, and one Rapid Response Unit (RRU) to provide feeding and hydration to first responders and residents. Distribution of clean-up kits, food boxes and hygiene kits is ongoing and 10 tents were provided for DPS check points.

The Salvation Army is serving meals at the following locations:

  • Angleton ISD Shelter 1800 Downing Angleton
  • Angleton High School 1 Campus Drive
  • Angleton Fire Station, Angleton EOC 111 East Magnolia Street
  • Roaming S of 35 to CR332
  • Brazoria Fairgrounds
  • Roaming 521
  • Red Cross & TSA Shelter CR 332, CR409 and 35

 

The Salvation Army is also providing roving services in the housing subdivisions of Holiday Lakes, W. Columbia and Angleton.

Fort Bend County

The Salvation Army Houston Area Command is operating three mobile feeding units and a RRU and is currently serving in the following locations:

  • 110 Hwy 90ALT, Richmond
  • 1600 Ave D, Rosenberg
  • Rivers Edge
  • Roving various neighborhoods in Richmond and Rosenberg
Montgomery County

The Salvation Army Pasadena Corps continues to respond with food, hydration, emotional and spiritual care as well as distribution of cleaning supplies, hygiene products and household food boxes to those in the Kingwood area.

Hidalgo County

At the request of the City of Mission, The Salvation Army in McAllen has been feeding first responders and residents in neighborhoods damaged by recent storms. This proved to be a community effort as the local H-E-B donated food, snacks and drinks, and even delivered ready-made lunch bags, while volunteers from the Boys & Girls Club helped prepare food in the Corps kitchen and served on the mobile kitchen along with Salvation Army staff and volunteers.

All Salvation Army units across the division have been briefed of the current situation and have been placed on increased readiness.

Total assistance provided since May 28:

Meals                13,805               Clean-up Kits                309

Drinks              12,562               Comfort Kits                303

Snacks              11,408               Tarps                            14

Donations to support the ongoing Salvation Army response efforts can be made by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY, or online at http://tsatx.org/TX_Floods

About The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services

“The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.” While every disaster is unique and creates its own special needs, the core of The Salvation Army’s disaster program consists of several basic services. And while these services address many of the typical needs of a disaster survivor, Salvation Army disaster relief is also flexible. Our services are adapted to the specific needs of individuals and communities and scalable according to the magnitude of the disaster.

Wrong Bus Ends Up at Right Place

Casimiro Rodriquez ImageCasimiro Rodriguez struggled with drugs and alcohol addiction. His family finally reached the breaking point and kicked him out of the house. Rodriguez was homeless on the streets of McAllen with nowhere to go.

With only his backpack and suitcase in hand he jumped on the first bus that pulled up in an effort to get as far from his troubles as possible — not realizing it was a city bus.  After only a few minutes of small talk the bus driver insisted on taking him to an unexpected destination — The Salvation Army. The driver assured him that he would find the help needed at The Salvation Army.

“I met Mr. Willie, the shelter manager, that first night I checked in. He showed me that he was there for me,” said Rodriguez. “I’m grateful because I reached out my hand for help and The Salvation Army gave it to me.”

Rodriguez stayed at the shelter for two months before transferring to The Salvation Army Center of Hope in Tyler that offers a residential rehabilitation program. The program transformed Rodriguez and allowed him to start working again. He worked as a custodian at The Salvation Army for almost four years before moving back to the McAllen area to take care of his father who fell ill.

“I humbled myself and made the necessary changes in my life,” said Rodriguez. “I learned that life is precious and can pass you by so easily.”

Casimiro Rodriquez ImageHe worked for The Salvation Army in McAllen and in 2008 was part of the disaster team that was deployed to Texas City and Galveston after Hurricane Ike. Rodriguez drove the mobile kitchen to the area and stayed there for three weeks delivering meals, refreshments and much needed encouragement to hurricane survivors.

Today, Rodriguez enjoys sharing his testimony and words of hope to others. Since his rehabilitation in 1994, he has remained sober and drug free. His advice to those who struggle with addiction is that “nothing is impossible with the Lord.”

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Vipers and Salvation Army Teaming Up to Serve Food and Collect Toys During Holiday Season

Craig Winder (Photo Credit: Chris Covatta/NBAE/Getty Images)

MCALLEN, TEXAS – The defending NBA Development League champion Rio Grande Valley Vipers announced Tuesday that they will be serving food at the Salvation Army on Thanksgiving and collecting toys for the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program to benefit the less fortunate during this holiday season.

All Vipers players will be in attendance at the Salvation Army in McAllen (corner of 23rd and Pecan) on Thursday from 11:30 a.m.-to-1:30 p.m. to serve Thanksgiving meals to those in need. Part of the coaching and front office staffs will participate as well.

“The Thanksgiving dinner not only serves the hungry, but also provides a family dinner for the lonely,” said Major Dan Ford of the Salvation Army.

The Vipers are also accepting donations of new toys at all four Vipers home games at State Farm Arena from December 8-through-20, as well as at the Vipers Pro-Shop.

“The most important thing we do here is give back to the community. We have been fortunate and it is our duty to help those who haven’t been as fortunate, After all, the residents of the Rio Grande Valley aren’t just our fans, but our friends, family and neighbors as well,” Vipers President Bert Garcia said.

The Rio Grande Valley Vipers are the NBA Development League affiliate of the NBA Houston Rockets. The NBA Development League, founded in 2001, is the NBA’s official minor league whose teams have direct affiliations to NBA franchises. For the 2010-11 season, the league will feature 16 teams – including the debut of the Texas Legends. A proven developer of talent, 20 percent of players in the NBA at the conclusion of the 2009-10 season boasted NBA D-League experience, while the league continues to develop coaches, referees, and front-office staff for the NBA and its teams. In fostering the league’s connection to the community, its teams, players and staff promote health and wellness, support local needs and interests, and assist in educational development through NBA D-League Cares programs. The NBA D-League also advances the game of basketball as the research and development arm of the NBA. Throughout the league’s 10th season, which tips off Thursday, Nov. 18, fans can watch all NBA D-League games on NBA Futurecast, the free live Web-streaming initiative found at nba.com/futurecast.

Hidalgo County Salvation Army Faces Budget Crises

(Hidalgo County, Tx.)  There are many groups and thousands of people in the Rio Grande Valley who do good things for our neighbors who need help most. But they — and the community — really couldn’t do without the Salvation Army.

The organization is where the rubber meets the road when families are truly in trouble.

And now the Salvation Army is having trouble.

The Christian nonprofit community outreach organization is seeking new means of funding as it faces a $49,000 budget deficit heading into its next fiscal year, which starts in three days.

The Salvation Army’s Emergency Shelter program, along with its lunch and dinner feeding programs and emergency welfare assistance programs, help between 175 and 200 people each day. The Salvation Army’s Executive Director, Maj. Dan Ford, said he doesn’t see that number declining anytime soon, and it continues to strain the organization’s funding — a total budget of $1.8 million next year. The recently completed census named Hidalgo County the neediest county in Texas with the lowest median income in the state.

That’s significant because if you’re a single mom with three kids in tow, no money, no home and literally no place else to go, The Salvation Army is where you turn first.

If the organization can’t backfill its deficit through fundraising or other sources, the Hidalgo County office faces cutbacks to part-time staff and emergency-assistance programs that helps people with food, rental payments, bus tickets and gas money. Three part-time staff have been cut already. If the organization’s funding situation becomes dire enough, full-time staff may be cut.

Lack of operating funds have also put The Salvation Army in a position where they are in danger of losing government grants. Without matching funds The Army cannot use the grant money because the funds can only be reimbursed from monies already spent. In order to spend government funds which are received from the State of Texas, Hidalgo County, and City of McAllen, the  local agency needs operating funds as it takes sometimes over a month to get reimbursed.

One factor that has lead to reduced operating funds is The Salvation Army Thrift Store’s income shortfall. Store sales are down this year over $100,000 in Hidalgo County at the Army’s two stores located in McAllen and Weslaco. Last year the Thrift Store Program put over $140,000 into the Army’s Social Service Programs in Hidalgo County while this year only $80,000 was appropriated to those programs.

“The Salvation Army has done its part in cutting expenses this year by over $100,000”, says Major Ford, “ but still cannot meet operating needs without the community stepping up to help us help their neighbors in what is a very trying time for all of us. We never want to consider cutting programs and services but we are swiftly getting to that point unless we get help.”

Major Ford reports, “Donations totaling $150,000 would get The Salvation Army’s finances back on track but it needs to come quickly or programs cuts are imminent. For many, The Salvation Army is the last hope for help with food, shelter, and rent or utility assistance. The hardest thing to do is tell someone we cannot be there for them.”

If you can help, send your gift to The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 4766 McAllen, TX 78502. You may also drop off your gift at 1600 N. 23rd Street in McAllen, or call Major Dan Ford at 956-682-1468 for more information. The organization is truly this community’s best friend in need.

Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services Respond To Flooding In Texas Communities, Continue To Monitor The Situation Across Texas

The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) office has released the following update on the effects of TS Hermine’s trek across Texas as of 11 a.m., 9/8/2010:

  • Temple, Texas: Flooding has been reported in the area, and The Salvation Army mobile feeding unit (canteen) has responded flooding in Belton, which has affected approximately 25 homes. The unit and personnel are currently serving meals to victims and first responders and providing clean-up kits; further details of services provided and numbers served will be released later in the day.
  • Corpus Christi, Texas: The mobile feeding unit and EDS personnel traversed local flooded areas yesterday evening, but found no one in need of emergency service. No major damage has been reported in the wake of local flooding. Salvation Army EDS personnel and the mobile feeding unit are monitoring the situation, maintaining contact with local Emergency Management (EM) personnel, and remain on standby.
  • Killeen, Texas: Locally, a trailer park was evacuated and two shelters were open. The Salvation Army administrator, Lt. Jason Moore, contacted Emergency Management and offered assistance; EM personnel reported assistance was not needed at the present time.
  • Freeport, Texas: Reports of local flooding, but no reports of damage. Salvation Army EDS personnel are maintaining contact with the local Emergency Management office. The Salvation Army mobile feeding unit, staff, and volunteers remain on standby.
  • Kerrville, Texas: Local flooding has not caused major damage. Salvation Army EDS staff, volunteers, and the mobile feeding unit remain on standby and are ready to serve in any area, as needed. Maintaining contact with local Emergency Management office.
  • McAllen: No major damage caused by local incidents of flooding. In contact with local Emergency Management, and Salvation Army mobile feeding unit and EDS personnel are maintaining standby status.
  • Waco, Texas: Completed morning conference call with local Emergency Management personnel. Local flooding has been reported, but there are no reports of damage or a need for EDS assistance. Highway 35 was closed due to flooding and high winds on Sept. 7th; vehicles were reported to have been blown off of the highway (no reported injuries).
  • San Antonio, Texas: There have been reports of local flooding, trees downed by high winds, and power outages to homes in the area, but the Emergency Management office has not requested EDS response at this time. Salvation Army personnel and equipment are maintaining standby status.

Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services personnel are monitoring the weather conditions across Texas. Widespread, sustained rain and high winds in some areas are concerns, as they may lead to flash floods, power outages, downed trees, property damage or loss, and injury.

Salvation Army EDS personnel and mobile feeding units stationed across Texas  stand ready to deploy within minutes of a request for assistance from their local Emergency Management office and will remain on standby as long as necessary. Additional Salvation Army EDS units and personnel can be called in from neighboring states, if necessary.

The Salvation Army will continue to monitor the situation and respond with Emergency Disaster Services as necessary.

For more information about The Salvation Army emergency disaster services program or to support The Salvation Army’s emergency relief efforts please visit www.salvationarmyusa.org, call1-800-SAL-ARMY, or contact your local Salvation Army Corps.  For current information on Salvation Army disaster activities, follow on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

The Salvation Army Responds To Flooding Caused By TS Hermine In Corpus Christi

Dallas, TX: – Due to flooding, The Salvation Army mobile feeding unit (canteen) and emergency disaster response personnel based in Corpus Christi, Texas, have been called into service. Once contacted by local emergency management personnel, The Corpus Christi feeding unit was deployed within minutes.

“The Corpus Christi-based emergency disaster response team is the first to be called into service and is equipped to provide food and clean-up kits to those affected by flooding, as well as food and drinks to first responders,” says Major Terry Israel, Divisional Secretary in Texas. “Four other fully stocked and staffed mobile feeding units (canteens) remain on stand-by in communities along Hermine’s path.” Those units, located in Kerrville, San Antonio, Harlingen, and McAllen, will remain on alert for three days. A satellite communications van and other emergency disaster response staff and volunteers also remain on-call.

With recent reports indicating that the eye of the storm is approaching Kerrville, The Salvation Army continues to monitor Hermine’s path and effects.

For more information about The Salvation Army emergency disaster services program or to support The Salvation Army’s emergency relief efforts please visit www.salvationarmyusa.org, call1-800-SAL-ARMY, or contact your local Salvation Army Corps. For current information on Salvation Army disaster activities, follow on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

Providing Shelter and Meals Ahead of Hurricane Alex

Dallas, TX: – The Salvation Army in McAllen, TX is providing shelter and food to people as South Texas communities brace themselves for the effects of Hurricane Alex.

On Tuesday, June 29, The Salvation Army opened the doors of its shelter in McAllen to residents evacuating ahead of the storm. The shelter accommodated 73 people of which 23 were evacuees. The Salvation Army also provided food support, serving 140 meals, and remains on stand-by should additional support be required at any of the Hidalgo County designated shelters.

Mobile feeding units (canteens) are in place and ready to serve in Corpus Christi, Harlingen, McAllen and Laredo. Eight additional mobile feeding units (canteens) have been mobilized to the State Staging Area in San Antonio along with staff and volunteers. The Salvation Army mobile kitchen , capable of preparing 20,000 meals daily, and generator have been made available and are ready for deployment if necessary. The Salvation Army will also provide clean-up kits in the event excessive flooding becomes an issue caused by the first Hurricane of the season.

“The Salvation Army is anticipating several days of sheltering and mass feeding along the Gulf Coast area”, said Major Terry Israel, Divisional Secretary in Texas.“ These services will be available at least through Friday, and as long as the need exists.”

For more information about The Salvation Army emergency disaster services program or to support The Salvation Army’s emergency relief efforts please visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org, call1-800-SAL-ARMY, or contact your local Salvation Army Corps. For current information on Salvation Army disaster activities, follow on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

The Salvation Army is Ready and Prepared for Alex

Dallas, TX: – The Salvation Army is prepared for any possible affects of Tropical Storm Alex, predicted to gain hurricane strength as it makes its way across the south eastern Gulf area.

The Salvation Army, Texas Division has 35 mobile feeding units (canteens) on standby ready to roll at a moments notice. Estimates predict these effective resources that distribute supply food, water, and ice will be operational from all points of the state within 4-6 hours, along with the manpower to serve those likely to be affected by this first storm of the season.

Should this or any future storm demand greater resources, The Salvation Army will coordinate additional units from neighboring states. The Texas Division’s Communications Bus, and Field kitchen (capable of preparing 20,000 meals daily) is also on standby for deployment if needed.

Mobile feeding units (canteens) are already operational and in place from Laredo, McAllen, Harlingen and Corpus Christi, with a further eight to follow. Each of these units can deliver anything up to 5,000 meals daily. The units are part of a first response package should the need arise.

“The Salvation Army has been responding in times of disaster since 1900” said Major Terry Israel, Divisional Secretary in Texas. “And have been providing practical assistance and emotional & spiritual care for those affected by natural and man made disasters ever since then.”

For more information about The Salvation Army emergency disaster services program or to support The Salvation Army’s emergency relief efforts please visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org, call1-800-SAL-ARMY, or contact your local Salvation Army Corps. For current information on Salvation Army disaster activities, follow on Twitter @SalArmyEDS.

McAllen Texas “Haitian Relief Fund” benefits Salvation Army


The ABC affiliate in McAllen, Texas, headed up a regional response to the massive earthquake in Haiti by organizing and sponsoring an appeal for donations. KRGV, Channel 5, established the “Haitian Relief Fund” partnering with four local businesses; Burger King, Lacks Furniture, Bert Ogden Motors and Lone Star National Bank. Each sponsor committed to match donations up to $10,000.

With no local administrative costs, 100% of all funds raised were equally divided between The Salvation Army and the American Red Cross. The grand total of $151, 674.06 was announced live on the air during a check presentation to Major Dan Ford, Commanding Officer of the McAllen Salvation Army, and Michael Huckerby, a representative of the American Red Cross.

Students in schools across the “Valley” region took the initiative to respond to the plight of the people in Haiti, coming up with many creative fundraising events. These included $1 non-uniform days, the donation of late library book fines and in one Elementary school students made piggy banks out of empty school milk cartons and filled them with spare change from home. In another school, girls were allowed to wear nail polish and boys permitted to un-tuck their shirts for donations of 50 cents! The TV station was inundated with donations from schools, churches and the public in support of the relief work in Haiti.

Major Dan Ford said, “We are very proud to be in a community of such caring businesses and individuals who have come alongside those in distress in Haiti. The efforts of KRGV, Channel 5 during Hurricane Dolly and for the Haiti Relief Fund are shining examples of what can happen when we encourage the public to do the most good for those devastated by disaster.”