On March 16, when it became the safe and prudent decision to close area Boys & Girls Clubs, The Salvation Army of Greater Charlotte’s leadership immediately turned its attention to how best for Club staff to serve families impacted.
Boys & Girls Club staff began making calls and sending emails to check in on Club members and their families. Club leaders began developing new digital strategies to launch in an effort to continue to engage members and keep them on track to be productive in the digital classroom and to successfully navigate this unprecedented crisis.
But, it was in The Salvation Army’s active role participating with the local Emergency Operations Center (EOC) that an unorthodox need arose. Through this relationship, The Salvation Army is perfectly positioned to not only be aware of emerging needs, but to rise up to meet the challenge to serve the community where we are most needed.
That task looks a little different this week than it did a couple weeks ago.
Club staff members who are accustomed to planning activities, helping with homework and serving as mentors at our area Boys & Girls Clubs took on a new role: delivering much needed meals to children of first responders.
In the wake of the crisis, Mecklenburg County leaders quickly realized the urgent need to establish temporary child care centers for families of first responders and frontline workers. Working with the Parks and Recreation Department and the YMCA, they set up multiple childcare centers. The next problem to solve was feeding all of these children. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) has been a leader in ensuring children in Charlotte have access to daily meals. With that operation well organized and underway, the solution was simple. CMS could provide the meals, they just needed a way to get them from Point A to Point B.
Boys & Girls Club staff eagerly answered the call to serve.