November 2, 2015 (Stillwater OK) As a member of the Oklahoma Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (OKVOAD), The Salvation Army, Arkansas-Oklahoma Division participates in the Emotional and Spiritual Care (ESC) Committee among many other VOAD committees. In Consultation with the Oklahoma State University (OSU) Vice President for Student Affairs, Dr. Lee Bird, the OKVOAD ESC Committee was asked to support the Stillwater and OSU community by staffing a two day Care and Community Resource Center following the recent homecoming parade tragedy.
As part of the ESC committee, The Salvation Army is providing trained Officers to help with the Emotional and Spiritual Care needs of the community. Captains Michael and Patrishia Knott are leading the Army’s efforts with support from Chickasha and Shawnee, Oklahoma Corps Officers: Captains Philip and Elaine Canning and Lt. Alan Grimes. In addition, The Salvation Army is providing lunch for all those staffing the Care and Community Resource Center which includes many other member agencies of the OKVOAD ESC Committee.
Captain Patrishia Knott states “It is an honor for The Salvation Army to be a part of this special team and resource center. It is the first time a center has been established solely to provide the type of care that only focuses on the individual’s emotional, spiritual and mental health needs.”
The Care and Community Resource Center is designed to provide a place for the larger community to gather, support each other and find comfort. Licensed mental health professionals as well as trained and credentialed disaster spiritual care providers from Oklahoma VOAD ESC Committee are available on site. The Salvation Army has an extensive selection of training to help be prepared for times of disaster, including courses on Emotional and Spiritual Care.
On October 24, a car crash toward the end of the OSU homecoming parade resulted in four deaths and multiple injuries. In the days, weeks and months following a community tragedy, many people experience distress, grief and other traumatic reactions. The Salvation Army has been an integral part of the Stillwater community since 1979 and is honored to help support those in need.
About The Salvation Army:
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing 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. 82 cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.