Salvation Army commits to increased services amid coronavirus economic worries

salvation army kettle (Large)
The group is providing meals and shelter to those in need.

The Salvation Army is upping its efforts to provide goods and services to those in need as well as to first responders and frontline workers in the battle against COVID-19.

The Salvation Army is the nation’s largest social services organization and has more than 7,600 locations across the country. The group is evolving its service deliveries to ensure the needs of the community, first responders and government partners are met.

Since its COVID-19 response began, the Salvation Army has provided 72,568 meals, drinks and snacks; 59,637 personal protective equipment items; 26,913 food boxes; 10,529 shelter nights; 5,704 hygiene and comfort kits and emotional or spiritual care for 3,778 people.

The group will continue providing basic needs for the 23 million Americans it already serves, and expects to add more individuals to that list as the virus continues to wreak havoc on the economy.

The group has launched drive-through pickup, community food delivery, meals at its facilities and is providing snacks and water to first responders.

While all are impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, the one in six Americans who are living in poverty will likely feel the effects quicker and more significantly, the group said. In Florida, that means more than 3 million of our neighbors living in poverty will be impacted.

“We are greatly concerned about the welfare of our state, and particularly those who are the most vulnerable in this crisis – those who are economically challenged, the homeless, and the aged,” said Lt. Colonel Kenneth Luyk, the Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army in Florida.

“Since the pandemic began, The Salvation Army has been on the frontlines meeting the food, sheltering, and other social needs of thousands of Floridians across the state, and we will continue to do so as the full impact of the crisis is felt. We are grateful for the generous support of the public, and we need their support now more than ever,” he continued.

The Salvation Army anticipates additional needs for things like rental and utility assistance as Americans face financial hardships making it difficult to keep up with bills, which don’t take a break for a pandemic.

With social distancing guidelines keeping the organization from carrying out traditional fundraising activities, the group is asking those who are able to make contributions on its website to help keep services and goods flowing to those who need it most.

Janelle Irwin Taylor

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. Most recently, Janelle reported for the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She formerly served as senior reporter for WMNF News. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected].


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