ABILENE Texas (KTAB/KRBC)- The February winter storm afforded much difficulty for the staff of the Salvation Army. Couple that with COVID, and the year was off to a slow start.
“We had to open up our lobby, we had to open up our gym even right here in the dining room we slept people,” says Salvation Army Captain Joshua McKain.
And though COVID still affects their day-to-day dealings, they were able to shelter the winter storm. Later in the year, they received immigrants released legally from the Bluebonnet facility in Jones County. Some saw this as a tax on the system, but Captain McKain says it was all a part of their regular mission.
“Our mission is to meet human need, in Jesus name without discrimination, and so that’s what we did…and we didn’t get bus loads you know we saw maybe 3-4 every other day” McKain says.
Now they’re focused on the upgrades nearly complete in their men’s dormitory – a $150,000 renovation funded by Lowe’s for their 100th anniversary giveaway that McKain says was needed.
“It is the most utilized space that we have, and it’s seen the least amount of attention,” says McKain.
The space will be open November 4th with 28 spaces for the male occupants – well in time for the upcoming Thanksgiving feast.
“We’ll serve anywhere from 12 hundred to 15 hundred meals” McKain said.
Kitchen manager Jennifer Melin says she’s ready for the Thanksgiving rush, but they’re in need of food.
“We need turkeys. . .we need ham, any kind of like seasonings…We’re gonna get it done, we’re gonna feed a lot of people, and it’ll be a lot of fun.” Melin says.
Donations of food, socks, blankets, and other essential items are in need and can be dropped off at the Salvation Army in Abilene at 1726 Butternut Street.