Concerned friends and partners,
These are unbelievably difficult time in our community, our nation and the world. Each day brings new information and new challenges. For individuals and families struggling with poverty and homelessness, the COVID-19 health crisis only multiplies their struggle to survive.
Many of you have reached out to see how we are, what services we are providing, and whether there is anything you can do to help.
Our food pantry is open Monday through Friday and has served 350 households with more than 1,000 people in the last two weeks. We are providing pre-packed boxes to clients and distributing them safely to avoid exposure for our staff and the people we serve.
All four shelters, adult shelters and youth shelters, and all four residential programs are in full operation. Between the shelters and our residential programs more than 130 people call The Salvation Army home every night. While it is a challenge to keep a house full of teenagers or 30+ families occupied, the staff have come up with creative ways to help pass the time.
Our homeless prevention and housing assistance services are still helping families find and maintain safe affordable housing, including veterans, individuals with serious mental illness, and low-income working families. This is very important right now, as some people who are doubled up with families and friends are being asked to move out.
Our Health Care Navigators have helped 245 people enroll in health insurance since the crisis started two weeks ago.
We have one early childhood education center open to serve children ages 0-7 whose parents work providing essential services, including 16 medical providers.
Our day center for senior adults is closed to keep our seniors healthy. Many of them have no family to help, so our staff are delivering groceries, calling to check in several times a week, and dropping off puzzles and craft supplies to help homebound seniors cope with long lonely days.
Staff who typically provide home and community-based services are busy connecting with at risk families, youth and adults by phone, providing practical help with groceries and cleaning supplies, and offering emotional support during stressful times. This is especially important to keep children in at-risk families safe from physical and emotional harm.
Our staff willingly provide these services because they know that The Salvation Army is a critical lifeline for so many people. Our phone lines are jammed with people looking for food, shelter, diapers, formula, housing, and help with utility bills and rent. It is vital that the Army stays strong.
No one can predict how long this crisis will last, or the long-term impact on the local economy. What we do know is that people need help now, and we want to do everything we can to help them. We are reaching out to our supporters, because we know you care too.
We have many needs right now—food for the pantry, cleaning supplies for our residential programs (and to share with families who can’t afford to buy them), and diapers and formula to help our teen moms.
Send a note encouraging our staff and letting them know you appreciate their willingness to serve to
677 South Salina Street • Syracuse, New York 13202
Keep praying for us, that our staff and the people we serve stay healthy, and that we have enough resources to help everyone in our community who needs us.
We’ll all get through this together.
The Salvation Army Syracuse Area Services