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05 September 2017

The Salvation Army Preparing to Assist Puerto Rico & Virgin Islands Should Irma Impact

The Salvation Army continues to provide food, hydration, clean-up kits, hygiene supplies, and emotional and spiritual care to first responders and survivors in Texas while keeping a watchful eye on category 5 Hurricane Irma, slated to hit Puerto Rico and the British Virgin Islands very early Wednesday morning.

The Salvation Army’s Eastern Territory consists of twelve northeastern states along with Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Should Irma’s path impact the islands, response will come first from the 13 Salvation Army centers on the islands with assistance from northeastern states, including New York, within the Eastern Territory.

“Our Emergency Disaster Services staff continues to work with our partners across all levels of government as well as other agencies to ensure that we are prepared for what may be up to three landfalls by Hurricane Irma across Puerto Rico, Florida and the Southeast over the next week,” said Michael Schwartz, Divisional Emergency Disaster Services Director for The Salvation Army Empire State Division. “The Salvation Army has pre-deployed teams to Puerto Rico, St Thomas and St. Croix to ensure that we are able to immediately begin recovery efforts as soon as the storm passes. In addition, additional teams and resources are en route to staging areas across the Southeast in anticipation of a catastrophic landfall there. According to The National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Irma was upgraded to a Category 5 storm overnight, with wind gusts of up to 170 mph. This type of storm is one that will cause catastrophic damage. We are continuing to work in preparation for what will very likely be an extraordinary response need to Irma.”

Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Overview

(9/5) – 9:30 a.m. CST/10:30 a.m. EST

  • Deployed 92 mobile feeding units
    • Each mobile feeding unit can serve up to 1,500 meals per day
  • Deployed 1 field kitchen
    • Each field kitchen can serve up to 15,000 meals per day
  • Served 234,269 Meals
  • Served 227,275 Drinks
  • Served 170,585 Snacks
  • Distributed 4,215 Food Boxes
  • Distributed 3,855 comfort kits
  • Provided 31,225 hours of employee and volunteer service
  • Provided emotional and spiritual care to 10,341 first responders and survivors
  • Deployed 1 mobile shower unit
    • Each unit contains 12 private showers

Cash Contributions Encouraged

Donors are encouraged to contribute cash. In-kind donations require sorting, boxing, palletizing, storage, and delivery to the disaster location. All of these activities can be costly and time-consuming, and therefore may delay service delivery. Cash donations allow The Salvation Army to purchase product to quickly and efficiently meet the most urgent needs of disaster victims. When possible, the purchases are made near the disaster site to stimulate the local economy and ensure quicker delivery.

It is easy to give to The Salvation Army:

  • Online at
  • Donate by Mail:
    The Salvation Army
    PO BOX 1959
    Atlanta, GA 30301
    Please designate Hurricane Harvey  on all checks.
  • DONATE via PHONE: Call 1-800-SALARMY(1-800-725-2769) to make a donation by phone
  • Text STORM to 51555 to receive a donation link for easy mobile giving

The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on donations for disaster relief efforts. 100 percent of gifts will be used in support of those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Donations from the General Public

Used clothing and used furnishings are not needed for disaster relief.

However, The Salvation Army depends upon your donation of used clothing and other items to support local programming. Please consider donating your used clothing to your local Salvation Army Family Store.


The Salvation Army recruits and deploys disaster workers through its local Salvation Army units. To register as a disaster worker:

  • Call your local Salvation Army.
  • To become a volunteer register here.


About The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: 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. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index (HumanNeedsIndex.org). The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts.
For more information, go to SalvationArmyUSA.org

About The Salvation Army Empire State Division

The Empire State Division of The Salvation Army covers 48 counties in upstate New York and one city in Pennsylvania (Sayre, Pa.) Our annual Red Kettle Campaign in November and December helps our 40 community and worship centers, service areas in Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse and 167 volunteer driven service units raise funds that remain in each community to help those in need.


Tags: Disaster