Community and Passion Drive Expansion of Salvation Army of Midland
written by: crystale galindo | photos provided by the salvation army of midland
The Salvation Army of Midland has been an asset to the Midland community for 69 years. With numerous hands working inside the shelter facility 365 days a year to provide emergency refuge, meals, showers, and living assistance to those in need, there are now countless hands working toward the goal of creating a new shelter facility that will serve even more individuals and families in need.
“Our current facility was donated by a grocery store back in the 70s,” said Captain Jeremy Walker, pastor and Corps Officer for Salvation Army of Midland. “Being the only homeless shelter in Midland County, we have outgrown our current space and feel blessed that our new facility will be able to serve a lot more people than we do now.”
Captain Jeremy and his wife, Captain Michelle Walker have led Salvation Army of Midland for the last six years. “We are called by God to serve those in need and that is what we are doing,” he shared. “I feel very passionately about what we do.”
Laura Sales, Advisory Board Chair for the Salvation Army of Midland, explained the new building is something the community of Midland has known to be a necessity for a very long time. “We have been very blessed with the generosity of the local community—a small group of very dedicated board members, led by Barbara Mamoulides and Charlie Spence—initiated a capital campaign and money was raised by eight local foundations and a few private contributors,” Sales said. “Most funds for the new facility came from local foundations, and grants from other foundations will help with furnishings and equipment.”
A grand opening event is scheduled for the community Wednesday, April 10, 2019.
“We will triple our capacity at the new shelter to provide emergency housing and services for both men and women,” said Sales. “In addition, we will be able to house family units – at this time, there are no other shelters in our area that have family accommodations.” Sales said the current layout of the Salvation Army building does not allow for housing families since they cannot mix children with other adults. “In family housing, there will be separate sleeping quarters for men and women and each will have their own room with a private bathroom, so the kids will be safe,” Captain Jeremy explained.
Sales said prior to joining the advisory board almost eight years ago, she did not know how much the Salvation Army did for the community. “I knew about the store and the shelter and I would bring donations, but I did not realize the depth and breadth of the ministry,” she explained. “As someone who is invested in the Midland community, I think it is very important that we provide these services to give those in need a helping hand up. Being the hands and feet, as God has called us to do, is very important for me.” Captain Jeremy also firmly believes “we do it for God and he takes care of the rest. Our work is very easy when you have a community who will get behind you and an advisory board who stands up and believes in the mission of what we are called to do,” he further explained. “Going out there and letting our story be told and finding those who want to get in here and help is so vital to our success, as well.”
“As someone who is invested in the Midland community, I think it is very important that we provide these services to give those in need a helping hand up. Being the hands and feet, as God has called us to do, is very important for me.” -Captain Jeremy
Sales and Captain Jeremy both agreed, as with any nonprofit, money is important to the organization; however, volunteers are just as important to the expanding of the Salvation Army of Midland. “Volunteerism is going to be key for us this coming year,” Captain Jeremy said. “Moving into the new building will provide us the opportunity to help more people, but that means we will need more volunteer help with the dishes, serving, and even leading up to grand opening. We will need help with our annual bell ringing fundraiser.”
We all know the familiar sound of the bell ringing at our favorite stores during the holiday season. Captain Jeremy explained the bell ringing is actually the largest fundraiser for the Salvation Army each year. “Last year we raised $147,000, and this year we have increased our goal to $150,000,” he said.
Captain Jeremy shared that, weather permitting, the new building will be complete and ready for move-in January 2019. “Our grand opening event is planned for Wednesday, April 10, 2019,” Sales said. “We will have many events surrounding it and plan to invite the Midland community to join us in the celebration of our new building. †”
For more information on the new Salvation Army of Midland facility, to make a donation or to volunteer for the 2018 Bell Ringing Fundraiser, please contact: