The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

August 28, 2010

Salvation Army of Enid struggling, in need of donations

ENID — Salvation Army of Enid, which is dedicated to helping others, needs the community’s help.

In the summer months, donations often drop off dramatically, with people on vacation and concentrating on back-to-school activities and purchases. The lack of recent donations and a reduction in funding has left Salvation Army in need of donations to help those in need.

“We have tightened our belts as much as we can, we can’t tighten it any more,” said Salvation Army Corps Capt. John Dancer. “We are down $40,000 in income.”

The lack of donations has been compounded by the increase in need of services.

“The numbers (of people in need) have jumped up dramatically. The economy is bad and the need is high,” Dancer said.

Salvation Army still has people in need of utility assistance, food assistance and shelter. In Enid, there is an increased need for services due to an expanding client base, extreme weather, a downturn in the economy and a loss of industry and jobs.

“We help folks with their electric bills,” Dancer said. “We are just finishing up with a shoe program. We had a fan program this summer. We appreciate all the people who helped with those programs. We have our men’s and women’s shelter, our food pantry and electric assistance.”

Salvation Army feeds those in need a meal twice a week, on Tuesdays and Sundays. They have also started a new program for the community.

“One of the new programs we have opened is a budgeting class,” Dancer said. “It is open to the public. We teach about how important coupons are and how to use them.”

Salvation Army has other costs that are not directly related to the services to the community.

“There is overhead, too, unfortunately. No one is going to get rich here at the Salvation Army,” Dancer said. “We try to put the community first, but people want to get paid, too.”

Salvation Army is asking for the community’s assistance. To find out more about how to help, call the Salvation Army office at 237-1910 or drop by 516 N. Independence to make a donation. Donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 708, Enid OK 73702.

“Everything I have heard about this community is wonderful. I am sure without a doubt this community will continue to get behind the Salvation Army and help us in our time of need,” Dancer said.

Donations also are being accepted at the Family Store located next to the office.

“Our thrift store is a major support to us but the items are not coming in,” Dancer said. “Anything we can sell, that we don’t donate to the community, helps. It all helps.”

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