Tampa, Fla. (August 25, 2012) – As The Salvation Army of Florida continues to prepare for what could be Hurricane Isaac, its Florida Keys unit is already busy serving at shelters from Key West to Key Largo.
Five shelters along the Florida Keys opened this afternoon in Key Largo, Marathon, Sugar Loaf and Key West.
Captain Max Perez, Salvation Army officer for the Florida Keys, said The Salvation Army volunteers and staff are cooking meals and prepared to feed hundreds. Shelters are Key Largo High School, Marathon Elementary School, Sugar Loaf Elementary School, Key West High School and the George Cato building in Key West.
“We’re serving rice, beans, sandwiches and a lot of love,” Perez said. “We have four teams running up and down the Keys ready to help people.”
Even as Isaac skirted the Florida Keys early Saturday morning, Perez was praying for the community.
“This morning it was thundering and lightning and not stopping,” he said. “The storm was crazy. We were praying for our teams and residents.”
With Isaac’s projected path to the Florida Panhandle, Salvation Army crews from Pensacola to Panama City are monitoring the storm for landfall. The Salvation Army is also prepared to open its disaster warehouse in Panama City to help stage disaster relief supplies in the region.
Along with serving, The Salvation Army is also available for emotional and spiritual care for those needing prayer or a kind word.
With regions of Florida still recovering from Tropical Storm Debby flooding, The Salvation Army is prepared to help residents who may be affected by Isaac as well.
In addition to feeding, The Salvation Army is prepared to provide:
• Clean-up kits containing brooms, mops, buckets and cleaning supplies
• Hygiene kits
• Drinking water
• Shower units
• First-aid supplies
• Emotional/spiritual care
The Salvation Army encourages all residents of areas in the storm’s path to prepare an Emergency supply kit and stay informed to all warnings. Disaster response professionals recommend having a three to five day supply of food and water for each individual of your family as well as flashlights, medication, and battery powered radio.
For more information on how The Salvation Army of Florida is responding to the storm, follow @salarmyfla on Twitter, search for “Salvation Army Florida Division” on Facebook or go to our website, www.salvationarmyflorida.org. You can also go to www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org other ways The Salvation Army is helping residents recover from a disaster.
In the short-term aftermath of a storm, Salvation Army officers and staff will focus primarily on the immediate needs of disaster survivors and first-responders, providing food and hydration for impacted individuals and families.
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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.