SALVATION ARMY AND CLEVELAND NATIVE PROVIDING AID IN UKRAINE
Local volunteer in Ukraine urges Chattanoogans and others to help
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (March 3, 2022) – As conflict continues in Ukraine, many people are being forced from their homes, losing their livelihoods and possessions and fighting to keep their families safe. In this time of need, The Salvation Army has pivoted programs across Europe to focus on providing food, water, clothes, blankets, self-care items, shelter and emotional and spiritual care to those who are displaced and in need of assistance in Ukraine, Romania, Moldova, Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Russia – where over 60,000 people are already displaced in the southern part of the country.
Locally, The Salvation Army in Cleveland, Tenn., and other local groups have been in touch with Cleveland native and volunteer Mike Hall to help support his efforts on the ground in Ukraine. He’s an independent consultant for the U.S. Department of Justice and responsible for training the Ukrainian police force, but Hall’s responsibilities have changed drastically in the last couple weeks.
“Police are fighting alongside the military, but they’re also taking calls for service on their 102 system, which is like our 911 system,” said Hall in a Skype interview on Wednesday. “They average about 700 calls per day in Kyiv, but now it’s about 7,000 calls per day. They’re the first responders, so we’re trying to equip them with all kinds of medical supplies so they can help their citizens and each other.”
In response to this massive need, Hall created an Amazon list with first-aid essentials, hand sanitizer, batteries, food items and other important tools like night vision goggles and prepaid SIM cards to support police officers and other personnel across Ukraine.
All items purchased through this list will be delivered to the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office. Items can also be purchased elsewhere and delivered to the Sheriff’s Office at 2290 Blythe Ave SE or The Salvation Army’s Chattanooga Area Command at 822 McCallie Ave.
The Salvation Army in Cleveland, of which Hall is a longtime volunteer and supporter, is also assisting with storage, shipping and other logistics surrounding these vital donations.
“The Salvation Army is thankful for Hall’s longstanding support and admires his efforts to help,” said Major Mark Smith, The Salvation Army of Greater Chattanooga’s Area Commander. “We hope his actions motivate people to give to The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts as we anticipate a prolonged need in Ukraine.”
Hall stated that, with no clear end to this crisis in sight, large amounts of each requested item will be necessary. He also encourages people to send letters of support with their donations.
“If we can all join our efforts together, we can make a huge difference,” said Hall. “The letters of support and prayers go a long way. They need to hear that we support them and believe in their independence – that gives them a boost.”
Hall once worked for the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, served as a youth and worship pastor at Mt. Olive Church of God and is the former director of Tennessee’s 10th Judicial District Drugs and Violent Crimes Task Force.
Donations to The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts can be made at https://salarmy.us/russia-ukraine or by texting “UKRAINE” and the amount you wish to donate to 52000.
Hall’s Amazon list can be found here.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army annually helps more than 23 million Americans overcome poverty, addiction and economic hardships through a range of social services. By providing food for the hungry, emergency relief for disaster survivors, rehabilitation for those suffering from drug and alcohol abuse, and clothing and shelter for people in need, The Salvation Army is doing the most good at 7,600 centers of operations around the country. In the first-ever listing of “America’s Favorite Charities” by The Chronicle of Philanthropy, The Salvation Army ranked as the country’s largest privately funded, direct-service nonprofit. For more information, visit SalvationArmyUSA.org.