Changing Lives – Shelter and Family Services

Emergency Shelter SignThe Need:
The Salvation Army Emergency Shelter in Quincy, Illinois is the only shelter within more than 100 miles that serves both families and single men and women.

Progress on the new John Gardner Stevenson Family Emergency Shelter & Family Services Center has been completed, and as of March 22, 2013 operations are being held at the 501 Broadway building. The Grand Opening Ceremony was held on Thursday, May 30 at 4:00pm. Video of the dedication ceremony can be found here. The new building is located diagonally from the Kroc Center, making it much easier to coordinate programs once held several miles away from each other. It can house up to 16 people with rooms dedicated to single men & women as well as families. Our Family Services and Food Pantry are also located there.

What would you consider a priority for your family?
Would you put food at the top of the list? Or perhaps a roof over your head, utilities, prescriptions, or something else? For many people, through no fault of their own, these questions have become something to lay awake at night and worry about.

For most of us, the thought of coming to The Salvation Army for assistance would be unimaginable, but for a growing number of families it is a part of survival. Some who felt they had everything six months ago now realize they have very little to support themselves after a job loss.

That’s where The Salvation Army steps in to help. Through your generosity, we have been able to help families throughout our region answer these questions in this unforgiving economy.

According to the terms of Joan Kroc’s designated bequest, No Kroc dollars may be used for direct service to clients, such as food, clothing, shelter, etc. or for the building of transitional housing or emergency shelters.

IMG_9832Program Mission
The Salvation Army Emergency Shelter and Family Services programs strive to bring about positive changes to individuals and families who are homeless or are in need of basic necessities.

Applying the gospel of Jesus Christ, physical and spiritual needs are met without discrimination. Guidance and support is given to assist those we serve to lead self-sufficient lives, which in turn will strengthen family and community.

What we are doing
To help prevent families and individuals from becoming homeless, Family Services offers daily breadline, transportation, furniture, clothing, food pantry, rent and utility assistance, prescription assistance and more.

For those who are homeless, The Salvation Army’s Emergency Shelter, provides crisis intervention by offering temporary housing to families and single men and women. Assistance is provided to help shelter residents find and retain employment and locate affordable housing.

Both programs provide life skills classes, case management, Christian counseling and referrals to other agencies who might further assist in meeting the clients’ needs.


The Salvation Army “Adopts” Berrian Elementary School

We just wanted to share from the blessings we have been experiencing here in the Quincy/Hannibal region. What a joy it is to now begin to develop partnerships and watch our vision grow as to the impact we can make over the course of a child’s life with the Kroc Center at the center of it all. In creating places and spaces for youth development, we are seeing the dream unfold before us. My dream is to watch us create the framework for lifelong impact as we walk with children and their families through the transitions of their development. This framework has just begun to solidify as we have identified one of our new partners in our neighborhood.

As part of our plan to build relationships in our community we have officially adopted our first school. Berrian Elementary School is located about a mile from the Kroc Center, and 91% of the children attending qualify for free lunch. Understanding what that translates to for income guidelines you can understand our desire to reach out to these neighborhood families with inspiration and hope for a future beyond their circumstances.

As an introduction to our Kroc Community, we held a Christmas Party for the school at our center. With the model proposed by Major Dan Jennings we took the adopt-a-school concept and ran with it. Lt. Linnea Forney took four Dollar Store gifts to the school and allowed each of the 235 children to select a gift for their mother and father, or guardians as they may be. With the selections made we moved quickly to take deliver of the gifts returning with a hand full of staff and alongside the teachers helped each child wrap the gifts for their parents. Last night the school staff arrived at our Worship Theater with the gifts set, and then the families began to come.

And come they did. While we sent a bus to assist with transportation needs, we only needed to pick up 18 individuals. As we filled our Worship Theater, the overflow began to quickly fill the balcony as well. When all was said and done we had 583 in our worship theater. We had a few introductions of our officer staff and their School staff, then turned to the children to sing Christmas songs and to share a bit of poetry. I then shared a short message about the Joy of Giving.

Using the Kroc Gift as our example of joyful giving, we transitioned to the joy of giving by the children to each of the parents present. I expressed our gratitude for such a gift to our community and invited them to join us in enjoying all that this Community Center has to offer them and their children. We shared our desire to partner with them to provide an environment for youth development and an incredible future for our children. Major Dan Jennings then shared the Quincy Kroc vision of Inspiration, Instruction and Involvement and the invitation to visit us on Sundays for church.

From there we moved to the Meadows, where Christmas melodies filled the air as brilliant visuals danced on the overhead screens. The simplicity of cookies and juice allowed for conversations to linger into the next hour as this strange new building began to become a warm inviting space for the families and school staff present. This was the first of our open door activities with Berrian School. We look forward to many more updates as we continue to build on the foundation now begun.

- Lt. Rich Forney