Disaster Updates from The Salvation Army of Texas

After Finally Returning Home, Texas Teams Reflect on Hurricane Delta Deployment

Dallas, Texas (October 28, 2020) – After several months of consecutive disaster response efforts, The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams from Texas have finally returned home. 2020 has been a difficult year for so many people and communities due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. For many, these challenges were exasperated by a particularly active hurricane season that significantly impacted communities along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast, requiring large-scale response efforts and the implementation of significant safety and operational protocols from The Salvation Army and its partners.

“This has been a very unique hurricane season, dealing with the demands of a global pandemic along with several powerful storms that have impacted Texas and our neighbors to the east,” said Alvin Migues, Director of The Salvation Army EDS in Texas. “Any large-scale response effort, deploying multiple response units from around Texas, dozens of staff and volunteers, and coordinating the delivery of practical assistance is always challenging. Add to that increased cleaning and safety protocols being implemented each day, and you can imagine how tough the past few months have been.”

Many registered and reliable Salvation Army EDS volunteers are older in age, a demographic particularly susceptible to the COVID-19 virus. “We’ve had to work hard and be creative in terms of our staff and volunteer deployments during Hurricane Delta and Laura, without several of our regular and experienced team members,” said Migues. “The team and the crews that I served alongside in Lake Charles were some of the finest individuals that I have had the pleasure to work with. Even with the daunting challenge of potential COVID exposures, our team stood firm in their commitment to serve. I witnessed some of the most inspiring actions to support one another and to continue to focus undistracted on the mission at hand. I was encouraged to see that The Salvation Army is the Army of God prepared to stay the course.”

The response units under the leadership of The Salvation Army Texas EDS team delivered 64,239 meals, 32,328 drinks, 19,482 snacks, and 2,223 food boxes to residents of the Lake Charles area after Hurricane Delta. In support of the clean-up operations, 1,750 hygiene kits and 1,138 tarps were also distributed. EDS staff and volunteers prayed with 2,640 individuals, an integral part of any Salvation Army disaster response effort.

Linda Dowell, who deployed to Beaumont, serving in Lake Charles after Hurricane Laura, turned around only a couple of weeks later to deploy again after Hurricane Delta. “It will take years for this area to recover. Story after story of people living in severely damaged homes because they have nowhere to go,” said Dowell from her home in Granbury, Texas. “The need is so great. Continue to pray for this community.”

Professional photographer, Robby Klein from Nashville, spent a day with The Salvation Army EDS teams in Lake Charles. “The Salvation Army set-up in Lake Charles was very impressive. Everything was very focused on their operation and feeding people,” said Klein. “There were a number of older volunteers out there and I watched one lady hauling a case of water almost as big as her that first morning. It was inspiring,”

Klein, who grew up in Southern Louisiana, witnessed first-hand the work of The Salvation Army when his family home was in the path of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. “The mobile kitchens and staff received a great reception from those who came for help in Lake Charles. I remember from personal experience during Hurricane Katrina after weeks of surviving on MRE’s what a difference a hot meal made. I spoke to one lady who had been working all hours to repair and clean up her house. The littlest thing – not having to worry about what she would have for dinner that night – meant a great deal to her.”

“The Salvation Army teams were really cranking it out!” said Klein. “The scale and efficiency of the operation was impressive. I enjoyed being able to connect with The Salvation Army and the work they are doing is making a real impact for those affected by the storm.”

Even as the Texas EDS team and volunteers recoup and recover at home in Texas, Tropical Storm Zeta looms in the Gulf, once again forecast to become a hurricane, making landfall along the Louisiana coast.

For the latest information on The Salvation Army response efforts go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org. To make a donation to support ongoing hurricane relief efforts please visit www.HelpSalvationArmy.org.

Meals, Refreshment and Prayers Delivered in Lake Charles

Meals, Refreshment and Prayers Delivered in Lake Charles

Lake Charles, Louisiana (October 14, 2020) – Twelve disaster response units and Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams hit the streets of Lake Charles, on day four of service, after Hurricane Delta tore through the area. In addition to serving meals, snacks and drinks, staff and volunteers had the opportunity to pray with more than 360 individuals on Tuesday.

Rapid Response Units and mobile kitchens, staffed by teams from The Salvation Army Texas and Arkansas/Oklahoma Divisions (AOK) and the Southern Baptist Texas Convention, delivered 7,434 meals, 5,602 drinks, and 2,817 snacks in Calcasieu and Jefferson Davis Parish on Tuesday. The fleet of disaster response vehicles and personnel from different cities, states, and organizations have quickly galvanized into an effective team under the leadership of the Incident Management Team from The Salvation Army in Texas.

“Our Incident Management Team from Texas has worked together on a number of large-scale response efforts this summer and get right to work like a well-oiled machine,” said Alvin Migues, The Salvation Army EDS Director in Texas. “It has been good to also collaborate with our colleagues from the AOK Division and long-time partners in disaster relief, the Southern Baptist Texas Convention. This group has come together very quickly and is a great example of how The Salvation Army’s disaster response and Incident Command model should function. They are doing a great job of serving the basic needs of the Lake Charles community, with many neighborhoods still without power.”

As of Tuesday, all Salvation Army units have been assigned permanent feeding stations at the following locations:

  • Old Circle K, 100 S Cities Services, Sulphur
  • Subway, 203 E Miller Ave, Iowa
  • Lowes, 2800 Derek Drive, Lake Charles
  • Walmart Superstore, 260 Sam Houston Jones Parkway, Moss Bluff
  • 909 Wehrt St, West Lake
  • Old Peggy’s Superette, 2231 Moeling St, Lake Charles
  • Quick Shop Store, 404 W. Napolean St, Sulphur
  • Walmart – Van Buren & McKinney, Lake Charles
  • Lacassine High School, 409 Algonia Ave, Lacassine
  • Sunlight Manor, 343 Goos Street, Lake Charles
  • City Hall, 102 Arthur Ave, Lake Arthur
  • First Baptist Church, 500 S. Adams St, Welsh

Another important aspect of any recovery effort is coordination with local emergency management teams and partners. “We have been actively working with VOAD, the United Way, the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness, and Little Caesar’s Pizza.,” said Migues. “As a result of these conversations The Salvation Army will be supporting a Point of Distribution (POD) at the Lake Charles Civic Center on Thursday and Friday (October 15-16, 2020) distributing food boxes, water, hygiene kits, and tarps.”

The Salvation Army has provided 21,559 meals, 16,762 drinks, 9,993 snacks, and made 1,378 Emotional and Spiritual Care contacts since Saturday, October 10th in the Lake Charles area.

 

For the latest information on The Salvation Army response efforts go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org. To support ongoing

Hurricane Delta relief efforts please visit www.HelpSalvationArmy.org. 

Texas EDS Teams Serving in Familiar Lake Charles Communities After Hurricane Delta

Texas EDS Teams Serving in Familiar Lake Charles Communities After Hurricane Delta

Lake Charles, Louisiana (October 13, 2020) – After several demanding weeks serving Lake Charles communities affected after Hurricane Laura, The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services teams from Texas have returned to those same neighborhoods now beaten by Hurricane Delta. Much of the area is once again without power and The Salvation Army service continues to be focused on providing food, drinks, and emotional and spiritual care to those in crisis.

With Incident Command established in the heart of Lake Charles on Saturday, the Texas Incident Management Team quickly began to coordinate service delivery amid continuing damage assessment. Five Rapid Response Units (RRU) and two full size mobile kitchens deployed from Salvation Army locations in Texas are providing service in addition to two RRU from the Southern Baptist Texas Convention (SBTC) and three units from The Salvation Army Arkansas/Oklahoma Division.

On Monday, response teams served lunch and dinner in North Lake Charles, West Lake, Iowa, Sulphur, Lake Arthur, Welsh, and Moss Bluff. Lunch service included MRE’s, snack packs, chips, and water. SBTC prepared hot meals to be distributed for dinner. Nine units served in fix locations while three RRUs spent the day roving throughout impacted neighborhoods to better serve individuals.

“We continue to see a lot of folks who are affected by these last two storms struggle with some very basic needs but they are resilient and always thankful.,” said Alvin Migues, EDS Director for The Salvation Army in Texas. “This is a very challenging situation, not only for residents, but also from a response perspective. We hope to be able to provide at least a warm meal and a sense of hope in the coming days to the people of Lake Charles.”

The Salvation Army will be serving in the following locations on Tuesday:

  • Old Circle K, 100 S Cities Services, Sulphur
  • Subway, 203 E Miller Ave, Iowa
  • Lowes, 2800 Derek Drive, Lake Charles
  • Walmart Superstore, 260 Sam Houston Jones Parkway, Moss Bluff
  • 909 Wehrt St, West Lake
  • Old Peggy’s Superette, 2231 Moeling St, Lake Charles
  • Quick Shop Store, 404 W. Napolean St, Sulphur
  • Roving Unit – Van Buren & McKinney, Lake Charles
  • Lacassine High School, 409 Algonia Ave, Lacassine
  • Sunlight Manor, 343 Goos Street, Lake Charles
  • City Hall, 102 Arthur Ave, Lake Arthur
  • First Baptist Church, 500 S. Adams St, Welsh

“Yesterday, our unit went to the same town I served in during Hurricane Laura response. This time much of Iowa is flooded.,” said Linda Dowell, a Salvation Army EDS volunteer from Granbury, TX, serving alongside her husband David. “Many of the houses that had tarps lost them during Hurricane Delta and now ceilings have collapsed too. Please keep everyone in your prayers.”

On Monday, The Salvation Army served 5,832 meals, 4,094 drinks, and 2,575 snacks in the Lake Charles area.

 

For the latest information on The Salvation Army response efforts go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org. To support Hurricane Delta relief efforts please visit www.HelpSalvationArmy.org.

Salvation Army Texas Disaster Response Teams Deploying as Hurricane Delta Approaches

Dallas, Texas (October 8, 2020) –   Hurricane Delta is expected to make landfall as a Category 2 storm on Friday along the Louisiana Gulf Coast that is still recovering from the impact Hurricane Laura. The Salvation Army has placed disaster relief resources across Louisiana and in neighboring states on standby, including mobile feeding kitchens, trained personnel, and supplies. Disaster response teams and units from Texas are staging in Beaumont ahead of anticipated relief efforts.

“Many of our trained disaster personnel have spent the past several weeks serving those impacted by Hurricane Laura in Southeast Texas and the Lake Charles area. Having just returned home they are now preparing to leave again to serve those who will be affected by Hurricane Delta,” said Alvin Migues, Emergency Disaster Services Director for The Salvation Army in Texas. “Our people are trained for situations like this and are committed to helping those who find themselves in crisis. The Salvation Army will be there to help.”

An eight-person Incident Management Team from Texas will be staged in Beaumont on Friday ready to deploy and lead The Salvation Army response efforts in the area most impacted by Hurricane Delta. Five Rapid Response Units, which are modified pick-up trucks with the ability to serve food and drinks, from Granbury, Houston, Dallas (2), and Freeport have been deployed. Two mobile kitchen units, able to prepare and serve up to 1,500 meals per day, from San Angelo and Dallas are also headed to Beaumont staffed by trained disaster personnel and volunteers. Additional equipment from Texas that will support the relief efforts include a 53’ field kitchen with the capacity to produce 10,000 meals per day, a 53’ Command Post, shower trailer, 2 hand washing trailers, 53’ reefer, and a 3500 gallon water tanker.

“This has been an especially active hurricane season that has required large-scale response efforts by The Salvation Army and our partner agencies,” said Migues. “Our people are prayed-up, well trained, and ready for the challenging work ahead. We ask for your support and prayers as we travel to serve those in need.”

In times of disaster The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services staff and volunteers will typically each serve for 14 days at a time. In the early days of a response, The Salvation Army’s focus is to provide for the immediate physical needs of the first responders and storm survivors by delivering food, drinks, and snacks. Emotional and Spiritual Care is another integral component of the Army’s service. Trained staff and volunteers are available to speak with, listen to, and pray with those affected by disaster.

For the latest information on The Salvation Army relief efforts please go to www.disaster.salvationarmy.org. To support Hurricane Delta relief efforts visit www.HelpSalvationArmy.org.

 

Food Box Distribution to Complete Salvation Army Response Efforts in Southeast Texas

Beaumont, Texas (September 7, 2020) – More than a week after commencing extensive response efforts in Southeast Texas after Hurricane Laura, The Salvation Army is gradually demobilizing operations as power returns to many locations. Four mobile kitchens continued to serve meals on Monday, and plans are in place for food box distributions later this week.

Since Friday, August 28, The Salvation Army of Texas has served 107,411 meals, 68,172 drinks, 40,965 snacks in affected communities utilizing fourteen mobile kitchens. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 1,327 storm survivors.

Four Salvation Army mobile kitchens are serving food in the following fixed locations on Monday:

  • Bridge City – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 945 W. Roundbunch Rd, Bridge City, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)

 

“We are very proud of the dedication and hard work of our Salvation Army staff and volunteers this week in Beaumont and the surrounding area. Several communities have been without power and our teams did a great job of providing hot-meals, water and encouragement to those affected by Hurricane Laura,” said Alvin Migues, Director of The Salvation Army Disaster Services in Texas. “In the space of ten days we have served more than 107,000 meals in very hot and humid conditions with heat advisories in place for several of those days. Thank you to each volunteer, employee and corporate partner who stepped up to make this response effort possible. Your efforts have made a difference in the lives of so many.”

The Salvation Army will coordinate two distribution sites this week:

  • Tuesday, September 8: Vidor Distribution site located at Love and Truth Church (145 W Bolivar St, Vidor TX 77662).
  • Wednesday, September 9: Deweyville Distribution site located at Deweyville High School (43200 HWY 87s, Orange, TX 77632). Volunteers needed.

At these locations, staff and volunteers will be passing out food boxes, frozen chicken, and other items as available. Set up at both locations will begin at 11 AM, and distribution to the public will take place between 12-3 PM. Volunteers are needed to support The Salvation Army distribution and can help from 11:30 AM-4 PM.

“Since August 31st, The Salvation Army has utilized local volunteers to assist with response initiatives in the aftermath of Hurricane Laura. Many of these volunteers are associated with nonprofit service organizations, such as The Rotary Club of Beaumont and United Way of Beaumont, which focus on providing services to communities in need,” said Kathleen Kouns, Disaster Volunteer and Training Coordinator for The Salvation Army in Texas. “In addition to these service networks, The Salvation Army has worked closely with Exxon Mobil’s Public and Government Affairs Division to utilize employee volunteers as well as local Church groups and good Samaritans. With their help, communities within Orange, Newton, Jefferson, Jasper, Sabine, and Calcasieu Counties have received more than 107,000 meals from mobile food canteens and temporary distribution sites. Volunteers have also organized The Salvation Army disaster warehouse, located in Beaumont, to enable faster inbound and outbound deliveries of essential items.”

As The Salvation Army continues to reach communities in the Golden Triangle, volunteers play an essential role in day-to-day operations as well as long-term recovery initiatives. For more information on how to join efforts, please visit texaseds.volunteers@uss.salvationarmy.org or sign up for current volunteer positions available at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4CAFAA2FA7F5C43-hurricane1.”

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

The Hands and Feet of Jesus in Orange, Texas

Orange, Texas (September 5, 2020) –The Salvation Army Officers, staff and volunteers in Orange, Texas, have spent the last week tirelessly providing meals and prayerful support to their community that sustained significant damage and power loss after Hurricane Laura. Thousands of residents have come to The Salvation Army and received hot meals and water from the drive thru distribution each day. The building has been without power since the storm and team members have continued to help others, despite their own challenges. On Friday morning, the Texas Baptist Men arrived at The Salvation Army unannounced, with chainsaws and heavy equipment in tow, ready to serve those who have been on the frontline of service since the storm.

Captain Jan Zuniga, Commanding Officer at The Salvation Army in Orange, appeared on a FOX 4 TV news interview on Thursday evening, stood outside by the church playground. During the interview she explained what The Salvation Army has been doing to help people after Hurricane Laura, how many meals have been served, and the plans for continued assistance in the coming days. All the while, viewers could see several large trees and debris from the storm strewn around the playground in the background.

Rocky Mize, an Orange resident and volunteer with the Texas Baptist Men, was sat at home watching the news as Captain Zuniga spoke of the work of The Salvation Army. Mize has been volunteering since the storm with the Texas Baptist Men working to remove fallen trees and clean up debris from homes and streets in the community. “Watching that interview and knowing what The Salvation Army does to help people in need, I knew that we had to do something,” said Mize. “I got in touch with my crew and we agreed to start our day on Friday at The Salvation Army and get their property and playground cleaned up. They are the hands and feet of Jesus to so many, and we were blessed to be that for them.”

“The Texas Baptist Men showed up with their chainsaws and got right to work,” said Zuniga. “In no time at all the fallen trees were gone and the whole place was cleaned up. In a beautiful gesture, Rocky carved a cross into the stump of a tree that had come down in the storm. This cross will remain as a constant reminder of God’s love and providential care for us. We want to say a huge thank you to the Texas Baptist Men for their hard work, not only at The Salvation Army, but also as they help residents throughout the area.”

Since Friday, The Salvation Army has served 91,891 meals, 60,580 drinks, 32,195 snacks in affected communities. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 1,092 storm survivors.

Five Salvation Army mobile kitchens are serving food in the following fixed locations in Texas on Saturday:

  • Bridge City – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 945 W. Roundbunch Rd, Bridge City, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)
  • Mauriceville – Market Basket, 11916 Hwy 62-N, Mauriceville

 

Eight mobile kitchens from The Salvation Army in Texas continue to provide meals in Lake Charles, LA.

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

McLane Family Donation Helps Southeast Texas Residents Get Back on Their Feet

Beaumont, Texas (September 4, 2020) – As power is steadily being restored to cities in Southeast Texas affected by Hurricane Laura, families are cleaning their homes and refrigerators and looking to replace food that has spoiled over the last week. The McLane family has generously donated 3,000 food boxes that will help families get back on their feet.

“Over the last few days, several of our Salvation Army feeding locations have begun to see a decrease in the number of people requesting hot meals,” said Alvin Migues, Incident Commander for The Salvation Army response efforts in Texas. “That’s an encouraging sign as electricity is being restored to homes in the area. Moving forwards, we understand that it will be costly for families to replace food that has been sitting in freezers and refrigerators and this donation of non-perishable food from the McLane family will be a huge help. We greatly appreciate the ongoing support of the McLane family and the McLane Group who are valued long-time partners of The Salvation Army in Texas.”

The food boxes arrived in Beaumont on Wednesday afternoon and will be distributed early next week. “Our friends and neighbors in Southeast Texas and Louisiana have been devastated by Hurricane Laura,” said Drayton McLane Jr. “Our family is honored to team up with The Salvation Army who are working so hard in the Beaumont area to provide food to families affected by this disaster. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who found themselves in the path of this devastating storm.”

The McLane family has supported The Salvation Army for many years, particularly in Bell County where The Salvation Army McLane Center of Hope provides shelter to individuals, families and veterans, food to those who are hungry, and long-term case management. McLane said, “We believe strongly in the mission and ministry of The Salvation Army and their creed from their founder William Booth, ‘You cannot warm the hearts of people with God’s love if they have an empty stomach and cold feet.’” In addition to supporting local programs and projects the McLane family have a great compassion for people in need and are quick to step forward with support. In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic they distributed 2,000 food boxes to the four areas in Texas where they have a business presence, 1,000 boxes to help with response to Hurricane Hanna in McAllen, and most recently 250 food boxes in Bell County.

Since Friday, August 28, The Salvation Army of Texas has served 81,680 meals, 55,595 drinks, 27,582 snacks in affected communities. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 989 storm survivors.

The Salvation Army is serving food in the following fixed locations on Friday:

  • Bridge City – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 945 W. Roundbunch Rd, Bridge City, TX
  • Port Arthur – Sam Houston Elementary: 3245 36th Port Arthur, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor, TX
  • Newton – Newton Church/Food Bank: 501 Main Street, Newton, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)
  • Mauriceville – Market Basket, 11916 Hwy 62-N, Mauriceville

 

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

Salvation Army Assistance Reaches Out to Rural Counties Affected by Hurricane Laura

Dallas, Texas (September 3, 2020) – After Hurricane Laura hit the Southeast Texas and Louisiana coastline on Thursday, August 27, much of the focus has been on communities including Orange, Port Arthur, Vidor and Lake Charles, LA. However, the storm retained hurricane intensity as it moved north with dramatic effects being felt in East Texas. During the last week, The Salvation Army has provided practical assistance in these rural counties, leveraging year-round contacts and relationships to deliver help to those in need.

The Salvation Army Service Extension program is one of the most unique and effective programs within the organization. Almost 250 Service Units are found in Texas. This is a location where The Salvation Army does not own a building or have any paid staff, but rather social service assistance is administered by volunteers who may work in a bank, in the courthouse, at the police department, or other similar businesses. These volunteers provide faithful year-round support to The Salvation Army and in recent years have played an integral role in several large-scale disaster response efforts.

The Newton Service Unit is a great example of how a volunteer-run unit can have a significant impact on the local community. Joe Miller has been the Chairman of the unit for more than 10 years. “At one point, The Salvation Army was operated by the County Judge, but they were looking to restructure and needed someone else to take it on. I don’t remember how or why, but that’s when I became the Chairman,” said Miller. “Being a Wesleyan, I’ve always had a great affinity for The Salvation Army as we have a very similar theology. I love the fact that The Salvation Army is first and foremost a church. There’s nothing wrong with other 501c3 organizations who also do a lot of good, but there’s something different about the Army being a church. All that they do is motivated by their love for God and people.”

Residents of Newton County have been significantly affected by Hurricane Laura despite being more than 30 miles inland. “Many people have lost trees on their properties and a significant number of homes have been damaged. Large areas have been without power or running water since the storm,” said Miller. “The Salvation Army sent a mobile kitchen from Beaumont to serve hot meals and has also supplied tarps for roof repairs and clean-up kits,” said Miller. “As utilities come back on, people want to fix their own food again, but it’s difficult and expensive for them to restock their refrigerators and freezers. The Salvation Army and the Southeast Texas Food Bank are going to be helping residents get back on their feet.”’

Service Unit volunteers throughout Texas have responded to the call for help during times of disaster and many have completed Salvation Army training courses. “One of the things I love about The Salvation Army is their unwavering support. No matter what happens in our community, I know that I’m going to hear from The Salvation Army asking how they can help. I know when they tell me they’re going to do something, it gets done. That’s my kind of ministry!”

Since Friday, The Salvation Army has served 69,862 meals, 50,101 drinks, 25,731 snacks in affected communities. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 730 storm survivors.

The Salvation Army is serving food in the following fixed locations on Thursday:

  • Bridge City – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 945 W. Roundbunch Rd, Bridge City, TX
  • Port Arthur – Sam Houston Elementary: 3245 36th Port Arthur, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor, TX
  • Newton – Newton Church/Food Bank: 501 Main Street, Newton, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)
  • Mauriceville – Market Basket, 11916 Hwy 62-N, Mauriceville

 

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

Volunteers – The Frontline of Salvation Army Disaster Service

Beaumont, Texas (September 2, 2020) – It is often said that volunteers are the Army behind The Salvation Army. That statement is never truer than during emergency disaster response. Trained volunteers who have selflessly deployed during Hurricane Laura have gone the extra mile, particularly considering the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the searing heat and humidity of Southeast Texas.

Rudy and Martha Zapata, from Lubbock, have served as Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services volunteers for more than 19 years. They have responded to tornadoes, wildfires, floods, and hurricanes close to home, and across the country, and are well known to local emergency response partners in West Texas. The Zapatas are ready, literally at a moment’s notice, to deploy to any disaster site and meet the needs of those affected. Their mobile kitchen is spotless, inside and out, and is perfectly organized. Behind their canteen they tow an ATV giving them the ability to deliver food and assistance deep into neighborhoods which may be inaccessible to a full-size mobile kitchen.

“My brother Jesse, who attends The Salvation Army church in Lubbock, introduced me to the Emergency Disaster Services program. From the very first time I stepped foot in a mobile kitchen, I loved it,” said Rudy. “I have been active as a disaster volunteer for more than 19 years because I enjoy serving others. But more than that, ultimately I hope they can see God working through my wife and I.”

The Zapata’s son, Victor, is a Marine and is currently serving in North Carolina. He has been gone for nine months and only returned to Lubbock on furlough a month ago. The Zapatas were placed on standby as Hurricane Laura barreled towards the Texas coastline, and then received the call to deploy to Beaumont. “We were looking forward to spending the last few days with our son before he had to return to North Carolina, but that’s when we received the call asking us to come and serve in Southeast Texas,” said Martha. “At first, I was sad, but Victor told me we should go and help those in need because he knows we love to serve with The Salvation Army. It is a blessing to know our efforts, even if it’s just a hot meal, can make a difference to someone struggling after a disaster.”

On Monday, seven mobile feeding units from Texas served meals in Lake Charles, LA, while an additional seven supported communities in Southeast Texas. Since Friday, The Salvation Army has served 59,201 meals, 43,861 drinks, 21,059 snacks in affected communities. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 691 storm survivors.

“The Salvation Army volunteers are bound together by one common thread: Sacrifice. Oftentimes, providing relief to people affected by disasters requires them to leave their loved ones behind, work in extreme weather conditions, and perform tasks that are physically and emotionally demanding,” said Kathleen Kouns, EDS Volunteer and Training Coordinator for The Salvation Army in Texas. “These brave men and woman do not seek accolades or recognition, rather their service towards others is rooted in their love for Jesus Christ. The Salvation Army would not be capable of reaching the number of individuals it does without the unconditional sacrifice of volunteers.”

The Salvation Army is serving food in the following fixed locations on Tuesday:

  • Bridge City – Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 945 W. Roundbunch Rd, Bridge City, TX
  • Port Arthur – Sam Houston Elementary: 3245 36th Port Arthur, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor, TX
  • Newton – Newton Church/Food Bank: 501 Main Street, Newton, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)
  • Mauriceville – Market Basket, 11916 Hwy 62-N, Mauriceville

 

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.

Pilgrim’s Lufkin Doing The Most Good in Orange

Dallas, Texas (September 1, 2020) – Pilgrim’s Lufkin, a valued year-round partner of The Salvation Army in Angelina County, came forward with an offer to provide meal support to residents of Orange. Much of the city, along with large areas of Southeast Texas, have been without power since Hurricane Laura blew through on Thursday. Individuals and families have greatly appreciated the hot meals provided by The Salvation Army and those prepared by Pilgrim’s served as a great boost.

The team from Pilgrim’s pulled into The Salvation Army of Orange on Saturday morning bringing with them a three-day supply of chicken, sides, and a custom BBQ pit. The enthusiastic Pilgrim’s staff spent the morning setting up and preparing for hungry residents, first serving a quick lunch, and later BBQ chicken and sides for dinner. More than 6,000 meals were served between Saturday and Monday, handled almost completely by the Pilgrim’s crew, from cooking, assembling the meals, and distributing in the drive thru line.

“This falls right in line with the Pilgrim’s principals and we are very humbled to work with The Salvation Army,” said Christian Dempsey, Operations Manager for Pilgrim’s Lufkin. “You come down here and see the turmoil that people are going through right now. It is very humbling for our team at Pilgrim’s to be part of the recovery. Anything we can do to support this area, we’re going to do that, not just as Americans but as Texans. That’s our commitment here at Pilgrim’s.”

On Monday, seven mobile feeding units from Texas served meals in Lake Charles, LA, while an additional seven supported communities in Southeast Texas. Since Friday, The Salvation Army has served 47,941 meals, 38,121 drinks, 18,616 snacks in affected communities. Trained staff and Emotional and Spiritual Care volunteers have prayed with 435 storm survivors.

“The Salvation Army is grateful to Pilgrim’s for their generous donation, not only of food, but also for the dedication and hard work of their staff in Orange this weekend,” said Alvin Migues, Director of The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services for Texas. “They have done a tremendous job over the last three days, leaving Lufkin early in the morning and returning home each day after dinner, through to their final meal service on Monday evening. I’m sure that residents of this community will remember their positive community spirit, even longer than their fantastic BBQ chicken.”

The Salvation Army is serving food in the following fixed locations on Tuesday:

  • Bridge City – Market Basket: 2005 Texas Ave Bridge City, TX
  • Port Arthur – Sam Houston Elementary: 3245 36th Port Arthur, TX
  • Orange Corps – 1950 MLK Drive Orange, TX
  • Vidor – 115 W. Bolivar St, Vidor TX
  • Newton – Newton Church/Food Bank: 501 Main Street, Newton, TX
  • Deweyville High School – 171 TX-12, Deweyville, TX (TX-12 & HWY 87)
  • Mauriceville Middle School – 19952 FM 1130, Orange, TX

The best way to support the disaster work of The Salvation Army by making a financial donation at www.helpsalvationarmy.org or by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY. For the latest information please go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org and watch for regular updates on our social media pages at www.facebook.com/salvationarmytexas/ and www.twitter.com/salarmytx.