While news of the successive hurricanes which hit America’s southeastern region have ebbed, disaster relief efforts by The Salvation Army remain intense. But even with thirty-six units attending to hurricane victims throughout Florida, the Army fears their assistance may be inadequate to respond to areas suffering multiple blows from the hurricanes.
Kevin Smith, state disaster services director for The Salvation Army, described the situation as “a rerun of Hurricane Frances as many of the same areas were hit for the second and in some cases the third time.”
“We’ve already heard stories of people who were so glad that they were spared during Hurricane Frances,” he said, “only to return to their homes this time to find nothing left.”
As they did when the earlier hurricanes hit Florida, The Salvation Army is responding to immediate needs such as food, water. Army Volunteers are also managing state Comfort Stations, sites where disaster victims come to in order to “seek information and obtain life-sustaining services,” according to The Army.
Meals are still being served to people living in areas without power. Over 20,000 meals were served on Sunday in those areas, reported Incident Commander, Major Don Vick, in Pensacola.
According to Smith, reinforcements from neighboring states will once again be arriving at Florida shortly, once Hurricane Jeanne has cleared their states.
Meanwhile, The Army is planning locations to set up fixed feeding sites.
The Salvation Army repeatedly announces on its websites that “desperately needed” financial donations are “the best way in which individuals and business can help with the relief efforts.” Donations can be sent to The Salvation Army “ Disaster Relief” P.O. Box 270848, Tampa, FL 33688 or online at www.salvationarmyusa.org or by calling 1-800 SAL-ARMY.