The Salvation Army Provides Ongoing Assistance in Flood-Hit Regions of Australia

February 18, 2012
Simone Worthing | | (678) 485-4726

Australia (February 18, 2912) - In the Australian states of Queensland and New South Wales, devastating floods have affected large areas, stranding hundreds of people and causing widespread destruction and loss. In Queensland, The Salvation Army is supporting those stranded by floodwaters as well as emergency services personnel and volunteers, while in northern New South Wales Salvation Army teams and personnel are helping with the clean-up operation.

In New South Wales the flooding began on 2 February. In the town of Moree, a Salvation Army Emergency Services team responded immediately, serving hundreds of meals at an evacuation center to evacuees, state emergency services crews and others for several days.

In Queensland, the hardest-hit towns were St George, Roma, Dalby, Mitchell and Charleville.

On Sunday 5 February Salvation Army Emergency Services crews from Dalby, Caboolture and the Gold Coast were flown in an Australian Defence Service Chinook helicopter to Mitchell, where they served hundreds of meals at an evacuation center. Captain Mark Bulow (Salvation Army Outback Flying Service Pilot and corps officer at Dalby) also flew the service's helicopter to Mitchell, bringing essential supplies for the center.

Salvation Army volunteers served meals at an evacuation center in St George until most of the town was evacuated to a safer area. A team also flew to Charleville and served hundreds of breakfasts and lunches at the evacuation center.

An evacuation center at the RNA Showgrounds in the Queensland capital, Brisbane, catered for those arriving from inland areas. Salvation Army teams served meals and assisted with urgent needs.

As the floodwaters recede, Salvation Army personnel and volunteers are helping residents as they assess the damage and start cleaning up their homes. 'The situation in the evacuation center is starting to ease but much needs to be done as the recovery process begins,' says Norm Archer, Salvation Army Emergency Services Director for the Australia Eastern Territory.

'Support will be needed for some time,' adds Captain Chris Shadbolt (corps officer, Moree). 'Once people head home and see the damage, that's when the emotional things start to kick in. We want to let the community know we are still here – even when the clean-up is over.'

It's not all bad news. Captain Bulow is aware that, as water levels lower throughout the state, people's spirits are lifting. 'A lot of people are getting back to some sort of normality,' he says. 'Some are getting payments through so they can start purchasing food and necessities instead of coming to the evacuation centers for help.'

In Roma, the clean-up has begun and Salvation Army personnel and volunteers are continuing to offer assistance. Norm Archer affirms: 'We'll continue to support every affected community as long as we are needed.'

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index ( The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.

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The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
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