THE SALVATION ARMY KICKS OFF HISTORIC CAPITAL CAMPAIGN, ANNOUNCES $10 MILLION ALREADY RAISED
Public Campaign to focus on “Invisible Austin” and Highlight Crisis of Family Homelessness in Austin
AUSTIN—The Salvation Army Austin Area Command today kicked off its first capital campaign in more than 27 years by announcing it had already raised $10 million toward a goal of $14 million. The campaign commemorates The Salvation Army’s 125th Anniversary and funds raised will support a renovated emergency shelter, a new shelter for women and children, new facilities to administer The Salvation Army programs, and a new drug and alcohol rehabilitation program for women.
“There is a quiet crisis of family homelessness in Austin,” said Area Commander Lt. Colonel Henry Gonzalez. “Last year, three out of four of the clients sheltered in The Salvation Army emergency shelters were women and children. These families are behind the scenes, out of the public eye and in desperate need. We believe this is a crisis for our prosperous community. Through this capital campaign we are shining a spotlight on family homelessness and raising the resources to greatly expand our capacity to serve them.”
For the last 12 months, The Salvation Army has been in the quiet phase of the capital campaign. Led by a volunteer Advisory Board of business and community leaders and philanthropists, The Salvation Army has secured donations from local foundations, businesses and individuals who have generously given toward the mission of helping pull people back from the edge and into the mainstream of society.
“It seems as though everything in Austin is on the rise: traffic, our population, the cost of living and, unfortunately, homelessness,” said Dwight Thompson, Advisory Board Chair. “Some of these problems may not have ready solutions, but by giving to The Salvation Army’s capital campaign, together we can address the crisis of women and children experiencing homelessness, and invest in the long-term success of Austin.”
The public phase of the campaign will include a robust multimedia campaign aimed at making the people of Austin aware of the crisis of family homelessness in our city and providing them with tools to both spread awareness of the problem – and take action by contributing to the capital campaign. The Army has launched a special website, www.InvisibleAustin.org where visitors can download digital resources to share with their networks and find out key facts about family homelessness, such as:
- Each night, The Salvation Army Austin provides a bed to 420 neighbors in need.
- Roughly 400 women and children are on the wait list for emergency shelter in Austin daily. On average, more than half of those on the list are children.
- 67 percent of those sheltered at the Austin Shelter for Women and Children are kids who attend public schools, preschools and child care just like any other child.
- The total number of beds at The Salvation Army emergency shelters has not increased in more than 10 years, while the city of Austin’s population has increased by 29 percent over the same time.
Additionally, Frost Bank has agreed to support a social media campaign designed to raise public awareness of and engagement with the capital campaign. During the six week campaign that kicks off today, October 14, 2015, every time the hashtag, #InvisibleAustin, is used on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and The Salvation Army Austin is tagged in the post, Frost Bank will give $10 to the capital campaign up to $50,000.
“At The Salvation Army, we provide a hand up, not just a hand out,” said Jamille Ruebsahm, Development Director at The Salvation Army Austin Area Command. “All of our programs are aimed at helping people move from crisis to self-sufficiency by wrapping them in life-saving services and support. Yet, while our services are vast, the need is greater. That’s why we are so grateful to those who have already stepped up to help us raise $10 million and look forward to the people of Austin helping take us across the finish line.”
The Salvation Army would like to acknowledge the following individuals and organizations that have already generously pledged their support of the 125th Anniversary Capital Campaign:
Austin Community Foundation, Austin Regional Clinic, Carl C. Anderson & Marie Jo Anderson Charitable Foundation, Allison and Jay Angell, Nelson K. Barre, David S. Barnett, Gilbert T. Bragg, Robert T. Brooks, Clayton C. Browne, Peggy and Stephen Byrne, The Clayton Fund, Inc., Robin J. Cooper, Exalton A. Delco, Rosemary and Russell Douglass, ECG Foundation, Ernest G. Frerking, Parker Frisbie, Frost Bank, William Gammon, Rudy Garza, Robert Golding, Margaret L. Gosselink, Ryan Gravatt, Tim S. Hill, Kelly Gray/Service Lloyds, Donald D. Hammill Foundation, Wallace W. Johnson, The Burdine Johnson Foundation, JP’s Peace, Love & Happiness Foundation, Keith Lanford, Jan Lehman, Lloyd Lochridge, Georgia B. Lucas Foundation, The J. E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation, McCoy-Rockford, Inc., Gordon McGill, Sherry A. McGillicuddy, Mike J. Nasi, Katherine Barlow Nelson, Peter G. Palazzari, Cathy and Randy Present, Nelson Puett Foundation, Freddie Proffitt, Sara and Dick Rathgeber, John C. Roiko, Philip Sanders, Don Shafer, Laurie Shanblum, Dwight Thompson, Herman Thun, David W. Turpin, The Susan Vaughan Foundation, John Welborn, David Welland, Leslie and Mark Winter, Pam and Neel White, Lola Wright Foundation, Mary and Howard Yancy
The 125th Anniversary Capital Campaign will greatly expand The Salvation Army’s capacity to serve those in crisis in Austin. For more information about the campaign or how you can get involved, visit www.InvisibleAustin.org and help solve the crisis of women and children experiencing homelessness.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 126 years in the Austin area. Locally thousands of people receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, to relief for disaster victims, rehabilitation for the addicted, clothing and shelter to those experiencing homelessness and case management to help people move from crisis to stability. Eighty-two cents of every dollar The Salvation Army Austin spends is used to support those services in Travis and Williamson Counties. For more information, go to www.SalvationArmyAUSTIN.org (SalvationArmyAUSTIN.org). Facebook.com/SalvationArmyAustin, Twitter.com/SalArmyAustin or Instagram.com/SalArmyAustin/