National Salvation Army Week, May 10-16, 2021
Dallas, Texas (May 10, 2021) – Every day, people with a range of needs come to The Salvation Army seeking assistance. Some have been forced to do this on a routine basis, so The Salvation Army has a program to help them become self-sustaining. The Pathway of Hope program at The Salvation Army provides goals and solutions to break the cycle of poverty experienced by many individuals and families in our community.
The Salvation Army in Texas is excited to celebrate National Salvation Army Week, May 10-16, 2021. Since 1889, The Salvation Army has faithfully and consistently worked to help Texans in need, 365 days a year, providing assistance to individuals and families who find themselves in crisis, shelter to those experiencing homelessness, food and meals to the hungry, and much more.
It is not unusual for The Salvation Army to see the same individuals return, requesting the same assistance, year after year. The Salvation Army’s Pathway of Hope is a nationwide initiative provides enhanced services to families with children desiring to take action to break the cycle of crisis that repeats generation after generation.
Through involvement with Pathway of Hope, families will be introduced to both Salvation Army and other services that are available within their community that offer a network of support, a sense of community, holistic programs, and spiritual guidance. Pathway of Hope is also a service connector to job training, health services, childcare and education, housing options, legal services, and much more.
“Families are assigned a Salvation Army case worker who develops a personalized action plan and then charts the families progress through regular meetings,” said Lt. Colonel Ronnie Raymer, Divisional Commander of The Salvation Army in Texas.“The program focuses on possibilities rather than problems and strives to identify strengths to assist clients reach their goals and dreams while connecting them with both Salvation Army and community resources.”
The Turner family was homeless. Bryan was living in a car with the three boys while Hannah was staying elsewhere as there wasn’t space for them all to be together. Dealing with ongoing serious health issues, Bryan was unable to work consistently meaning that Hannah needed to be available to look after him and the children. They were without hope and couldn’t see a way out of their situation.
A friend suggested that they contact The Salvation Army for assistance. “Everyone knows about The Salvation Army and how they help people,” said Hannah. “Through the Pathway of Hope program, they were able to help with some referrals and got us into a hotel for a short time. It’s been really helpful to have people to talk to about what is going on in life. I’m not used to that kind of support network,” said Hannah. “I was dropped off at a Salvation Army shelter at the age of 18 and I’ve pretty much had to figure life out on my own until now.”
Salvation Army staff helped Bryan successfully apply for disability benefits and continue to meet with the family twice each month. Hannah is working as a bus driver for a school district earning a steady income and health benefits for the first time.
“I feel like there is finally a light at the end of the tunnel and I’m learning to deal with stress and pressure in a completely new way, thanks to the guidance and support of The Salvation Army,” said Hannah. “We’re living paycheck to paycheck, but that’s ok. I’m hoping we will soon have a little money left in our account at the end of each month. I want to eventually take the kids on vacation and do stuff other people do. For now, we’re paying the bills and have a roof over our heads.”
“The Salvation Army has been there to encourage us and give us the positive reassurance that we can do it. They have helped pick us up and kept us working toward our goals.”
The Salvation Army’s Pathway of Hope initiative marks a pivotal shift to focusing on the core causes of poverty rather than treating the symptoms. Lack of job opportunities, unstable housing, and an underserved educational environment can all be major challenges for someone looking to lead a self-sustainable life. “With our help, people living in poverty can break the cycle of crisis and vulnerability and lead families down a path toward increased stability for years to come,” said Raymer. “It’s a pathway of hope for current and future generations.”
For more information or to make a donation, please visit us online at www.salvationarmytexas.org
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a broad array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org