Today the Twin Cities Salvation Army began serving federal employees who are experiencing financial hardship due to the government shutdown. Salvation Army staff and volunteers at two makeshift service centers are now providing the workers with food shelf services and financial assistance (read press release).
So far, the workers have been grateful.
“It’s been special to see that people have our back – just like we have their back with what we do,” said a female security officer at Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport, where The Salvation Army has set up a booth to offer gas vouchers, utility assistance, and rent/mortgage assistance.
Another female security officer showed up to apply for mortgage assistance.
“I just bought my home and already I have depleted a lot of my savings,” she said. “The hardest part is the fear of the unknown. How long will my money last? I have been praying that (the shutdown) would end.”
The Salvation Army opened a second service center in an unoccupied office space near Mall of America. A steady stream of federal employees arrived throughout the day to fill their grocery bags with food, much of which was donated by Cub.
A male federal employee was especially thankful for the food because he and his family are running dangerously low on money. He has been working without pay for four weeks.
“We had planned for (the shutdown), but a month is still a long time,” he said. “We haven’t been making any non-essential purchases. I never thought I’d have to ask for help. But I sure do appreciate this.”
Captain Katherine Clausell, social services director for The Salvation Army Northern Division, was stationed at the airport service center. She and three Salvation Army caseworkers provided financial assistance for dozens of federal workers (pictured).
“There has been a tremendous sense of elation that The Salvation Army and our supporters have responded in this way,” Clausell said. “There has been nothing but smiles, thanks, and gratitude.”
Donations of food and money are needed in order to keep these services available for as long as necessary. Nonperishable foods can be given weekdays from 9 a.m.–4 p.m. at 2001 Killebrew Dr., Suite 460, Bloomington (South Loop Office Park, located across the street from the south side of Mall of America).
Monetary donations can be made in three ways:
- Give online
- Mail a check designated “Government Shutdown” to The Salvation Army, 2445 Prior Ave. N., Roseville, MN 55113
- Call 651-746-3517 during weekday business hours
These services have been made possible through a coordinated effort between The Salvation Army, the Transportation Security Administration, and the federal government. The Salvation Army is an apolitical charity dedicated to meeting human needs without discrimination.
Please join The Salvation Army by volunteering or making a donation to support your local community. Stay current on how The Salvation Army is changing lives in Minnesota and North Dakota by signing up for our e-Newsletters.