Salvation Army Delivers Hot Drinks for Homeless

FAYETTEVILLE, AR – Hot drinks will be served to help the homeless fight the cold.

The Salvation Army Corps Community Center of Fayetteville will be taking a canteen truck out Tuesday, January 24, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. They plan to do this each week during winter.

You can spread the word by using #giveNWA #feedNWA.

Salvation Army Raises Over $340K in Red Kettle Campaign

NORHTWEST ARKANSAS – The Salvation Army reached 90 percent of its money raising goal in the annual Red Kettle Campaign.

The group raised a total of $343,952, which is 91 percent of their goal. Major Dan Matthews, Area Commander for the Salvation Army released the following statement:

“We want to thank each community in Northwest Arkansas for their generosity this year in giving to the Christmas Kettles. It was a wonderful year – we made 91% of our goal, and we are delighted with that. All of the Angel Tree tags were bought for, and we can just imagine how many families were brought together around the tree because of that generosity in NWA. So thank you, to everyone in this community, for giving from the heart this year. God Bless you.”

The money raised will help support Salvation Army services in NWA  in 2017, including providing shelter, food, utility assistance, addiction recovery, clothing, furniture and disaster relief. Also this year, the Salvation Army was able to provide Angel Tree gifts to 2,113 children this year.

Local Woman Claims Warming Shelters May Have Saved Her Life

It’s cold for anyone having to go outside this time of year, especially for our homeless population.

Many of them are spending most of their days in freezing temperatures.
One Northwest Arkansas woman says warming shelters may have saved her life.
Jewelya Boyd was homeless for ten years, she now lives at the Havenwood Home in Bentonville, but she said the salvation army is why she survived being on the streets.
“When you’re homeless and it’s cold you are fighting for your life most definitely,” Boyd said.
For Boyd, staying warm isn’t something she’s taking for granted.
“I experienced homelessness for the last ten years of my life, off and on, off and on. Mostly do to my addiction and not keeping things together like i should have,” Boyd said.
She regularly used the Salvation Army’s cold weather shelters to get by during the decade she was on the streets.
“I’ve literally slept in my car and on the ground before that,” said Boyd.
A spokesperson for the Northwest Arkansas Salvation Army said the number of people coming to the shelters has increased, because of the overall population boom.
But they say no matter the building capacity size they won’t turn away people, even if it gets a bit crowded.
Boyd believes cold weather shelters saved her life, and recommends if you can’t find your way to a shelter,  use blankets, hay or anything to keep yourself warm through the night..
“One bad circumstance is all it takes for someone to wind up on the streets and cold,” Boyd said.
Which is why she says we are so fortunate to live in Northwest Arkansas
“A lot of areas don’t have these shelters and opportunities and warming places. It’s hard for someone that’s out in the country I can imagine, but we are very incredibly blessed to have such warming shelters and areas that are willing to take people in for just the night,” Boyd said.
There are several options for shelters in Northwest Arkansas, including Bentonville and here in Fayetteville.
For people in the River Valley, The Community Rescue Mission in Fort Smith is also open.

Homeless Census Training Helps Identify NWA Homeless Population

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS — – Homelessness in Northwest Arkansas has changed over the years. What once was a population made up of predominantly males has shifted to include women and children.
One professor in Arkansas has been tracking the changes over the years and he gathered a group to help him find out who in our state is living without a home.
Every other year, University of Arkansas Professor of Sociology Dr. Kevin Fitzpatrick uses volunteers to count the homeless population in Benton and Washington county.
Since 2007 the population has increased. On Monday around 50  volunteers gathered at Central United Methodist Church. They learned what they’ll be doing this week — during a 24 hour period — to pinpoint the number of people without homes right here in Northwest Arkansas.
“We give them the location and then give them a time frame and then they are asked to go to that particular site with a team leader, theres anywhere between five and ten volunteers at a site and then systematically interview everyone that is on site,” Dr. Kevin Fitzpatrick said. “Not everyone on site is homeless, but there is a set of screening questions to determine whether or not that person is homeless and if they are, then they do a complete interview which takes about 4 to 5 minutes per person.”
Without the reliable data, from volunteers like Jazmynne Matthews, that details the homeless population in the two counties, the government will not provide federal funding to the area.
“I think that there is a fear of stepping out, but at least they are bold enough, even in their fears to say i want to do something to help my fellow man,” Matthews said.
Ever since volunteers have been doing the census since 2007, Northwest Arkansas has brought in over $3.5 million.

-original story with KNWA-