May 20, 2015 - Oklahoma City, OK – The Salvation Army continues to provide long-term recovery services to residents in Central Oklahoma following a series of EF3, EF4 and EF5 tornadoes on May 19, 20 and 31 in 2013 that created catastrophic circumstances for many individuals and families. Although it has been two years this week, serving those impacted remain a focus for The Salvation Army.
Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) teams immediately responded to the storms and provided food, hydration, and emotional and spiritual care to survivors and first responders. Thanks to generous support from the American public, corporate donors, and philanthropic organizations, The Salvation Army raised $18.2 million for response and recovery efforts. The long-term recovery of storm survivors, with their many and varying needs, is an ongoing focus for the Army, and is where the bulk of donated funding is committed.
Of the total donated, The Salvation Army spent $2.4 million (more than 13%) on response operations, including the deployment of 28 mobile kitchens and the opening of a 100,000 sq. ft. distribution center. During response operations, The Salvation Army provided:
• 389,037 meals, drinks and snacks
• 28,891 hours of employee and volunteer service
• Emotional and spiritual care to 14,728 individuals
• Emergency financial aid to 3,681 families (31,208 individuals), with assistance such as gift cards, vouchers to Family Thrift Stores, and referrals for a variety of services.
The Salvation Army continues to support families affected by the storms and to help rebuild communities. The Salvation Army committed the balance of the total donated (nearly 87%) to long-term recovery, including the following:
• $10.5 million to support long-term recovery case management and direct aid for disaster survivors
• $3 million for construction of residential storm shelters
• $1.7 million for community preparedness and mitigation projects, including the distribution of weather radios and emergency “go” bags, senior programming and preparedness, and other outreach programs to help make communities more disaster-resilient in the event of future storms
• $650,000 for a furniture program to help disaster survivors replace furnishings and general household goods
The Salvation Army was a founding member and participating agency of the Oklahoma Disaster Recovery Project (ODRP), a multi-agency case management partnership. The case management process involves working with affected individuals and families to help identify their needs, develop their long-term recovery plans, connect them with available community resources, and help meet their long-term recovery goals, one step at a time. Through May 15, 2015, ODRP has 519 open cases and has closed 3,409 cases.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter for the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. Eighty-two cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, visit SalvationArmyUSA.org.