Salvation Army announces changes, relief efforts

Delaware News Desk
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

The Salvation Army of Delaware announced March 17 it is ramping up its efforts to continue to serve those in need during the coronavirus 2019 global pandemic.

Since Gov. John Carney’s recent orders designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Salvation Army has implemented necessary changes.

Effective March 17, Delaware operations will limit person-to-person contact. In addition, much of the day-to-day business will take place by phone. Essential personnel are reporting for duty daily to keep services up and running for vulnerable populations.

The Salvation Army in Delaware has temporarily closed its senior programs and changed how it serves the hungry, in order to mitigate the spread of the virus, throughout Delaware feeding programs, including soup kitchens and pantries. Clients are no longer allowed to come into facilities; instead, the Salvation Army is providing pre-packaged meals-to-go either in boxes or bags that they pick up at the door. In Seaford, the mobile food truck, known as a canteen, is going into communities and delivering meals-to-go, to those in need, especially students whose schools are closed because of the pandemic. In New Castle County, the organization has begun staging deliveries of meals and groceries to seniors.

The homeless shelter is open and operating, with heightened cleaning throughout the day, especially in high-traffic areas. Hygiene and prevention guidance in accordance with Centers for Disease Control recommendations is being used and shared with staff, volunteers and program participants. The shelter is no longer accepting new clients, transitioning the approach should it become necessary to quarantine any confirmed cases of COVID-19 among the current population.

While no Salvation Army worker or client has been diagnosed with COVID-19, the organization is closely monitoring facilities, workers and clients, and tracking current statistics through CDC reporting. A newly formed Salvation Army Incident Management Team is regularly interfacing with local, state and federal authorities.

The Salvation Army anticipates a spike in emergency assistance needs as the crisis continues, and encourages support from the community.

“It’s all about giving hope during some very bleak and troubling times,” said Captain Timothy Sheehan Delaware State Coordinator for The Salvation Army Delaware. “Monetary gifts will go a long way in enabling us to continue doing the most good in our communities. Our basic programs must continue during these challenging times. We’re all in this together and every donation, no matter how big or how small, makes a significant difference. Donate by distance and ‘Do the Most Good.”

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