• Philip Burn

Salvation Army Food Service and Assessment Continues in Southeast Texas

Houston, Texas (May 12, 2024) – A week into large-scale food distributions to flooded communities in Southeast Texas, Salvation Army staff continue to monitor service areas as conditions change daily. Water levels are receding at different rates in the San Jacinto River and Trinity River basins and forecast rain and water release from lakes in the north of the state have the potential to dramatically impact the current situation.

On Saturday, seven Salvation Army mobile feeding units served in fixed sites at the Jack Hartel Building in Liberty, River Plantation in Conroe, Ollie’s Outlet in Cleveland, Patton Village City Hall, Family Church in Liberty, Operation Refuge Pantry in Cleveland, and Plum Grove Assembly of God (Distribution Site), in addition to roaming in New Caney and west of Lake Houston.

“Our staff and volunteers are doing an incredible job, now seven days into their deployment. There is a great camaraderie amongst the team, including the Southern Baptist kitchen crew, and this shows in the effectiveness of their service to the people who need our help,” said Alvin Migues, Emergency Disaster Services Director for The Salvation Army in Texas. “We meet in the morning for a short devotional time and to review plans for the day. This time helps focus everyone and answer any questions related to service locations, food quantities or other logistical issues. After the units return and have been unloaded and cleaned, we meet for our evening debrief. The crews, IMT staff, and kitchen staff enjoy dinner together and share their experiences from the day. The work is long and tiring but also incredibly rewarding. I am thankful for the commitment of our volunteers, staff and officers.”

Several roads remain closed in the area due to flooding, and bridges have failed and are impassable due to the volume of moving water. As the water recedes and more rural communities become accessible around Lake Houston, it is anticipated that new service locations will open. Salvation Army Service Unit volunteers in Cleveland, Liberty and Livingston are working with The Salvation Army Incident Management Team and local agencies to coordinate distributions of cleanup kits and food boxes starting this week.

“We continue to meet people who have received very little or no assistance since the flooding began,” said Captain Jenifer Phillips, Emotional and Spiritual Care Officer. “It is amazing how positive and resilient the people are despite losing everything they own in some cases and not knowing how they will recover. It is truly a privilege for The Salvation Army to serve them in such challenging times and I have been blessed by the response to our work and prayers.”

Since Sunday, May 5, The Salvation Army has served 14,377 meals, 9,079 drinks, 1,551 snacks and made 1,820 Emotional and Spiritual Care contacts. 1,592 cleanup kits, 1,160 food boxes, 1,344 MREs, and 684 hygiene kits have been distributed. The Incident Management Team continues to assess and monitor flood levels and community needs throughout the area.

To make a donation to support The Salvation Army’s response efforts to Texas Floods (May 2024) go to helpsalvationarmy.org. For more information on The Salvation Army’s current disaster response efforts go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org.