Summer had just begun, and already, the U.S. had seen its share of disaster. Tropical Storm Debby dumped 20 inches of rain on south Florida. Wildfires caused mass evacuations and destruction across the West. A string of fast–moving thunderstorms knocked out power to millions in the mid–Atlantic, and record–breaking heat gripped the nation.
And everywhere, The Salvation Army was on the job.
Following Debby, Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams from all over Florida brought mobile canteens to help flooded–out residents with basics like food and water, hygiene and cleanup kits.
In Colorado, where wildfires raged in Waldo Canyon and High Park, EDS workers from as far away as Montana and Wyoming came to provide shelter, clothing, food, and comfort and counseling to evacuees.
During the heat wave and sustained power outages, many Salvation Army centers opened their doors to become cooling stations. In Fort Lauderdale, Fla., the Army gave out ice cream cones to homeless people.
For the people who receive help from The Salvation Army, it’s about much more than the tangible. The Newark, Ohio, Advocate reported on an 75–year–old woman, Clara Roshon, who came to an Army cooling station to recharge the battery on her oxygen tank.
“I have been treated like royalty here,” Roshon said. “I didn’t know what to do. Everyone down here is so helpful. I appreciate them so much. Thank the good Lord they have places like these.”