GULF BREEZE, FLA (May 10, 2014) - In the shadow of a large Methodist church, a dozen Salvation Army volunteers help to rebuild a community devastated by rain and flooding.
Members of The Salvation Army’s Emerald Coast Soldiers basketball team, quickly helped to distribute water, food boxes and meals into the church.
“It feels really good to be here,” said Dwayne Kelley, Jr., a member of the basketball team. “I live in Pensacola, my house did not get flooded, but other houses did. We just wanted to come out and help support in whatever way we could.”’
Dwayne’s teammates spent several hours passing food off The Salvation Army canteen and helping to distribute food boxes and water at the church. In total, Salvation Army volunteers gave out 3,456 bottles of water, 124 food boxes, 24 six gallons of bleach and 80 clean up kits.
Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church has become the community’s epicenter for connecting displaced residents with government or social service assistance. On Saturday, May 10, 2014, the church was filled with more than 100 volunteers, all helping their neighbors in need.
Lester Spencer, Gulf Breeze United Methodist Church senior pastor, said he was glad to see all the volunteers fill the church and then go out and help.
“This is being the body of Christ,” he said. “This is being the hands and feet of Jesus and working together to rebuild the community.”
Along with the 100 volunteers, Spencer said there were 137 Marines stationed at the church in the morning, all waiting for orders to go to neighborhoods and help others.
Volunteers were tasked with everything from going door to door to help clean out the muck, debris collection, in the basketball team’s case, helping with food and water.
“You know, this could happen to any of us,” Dwayne said. “It’s important for all of us to help, plus I look good in red.”
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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.