ADA - The Salvation Army has been in the Ada area serving Coal and Pontotoc counties for over 50 years. Their offices are located at 115 North Oak and the Salvation Army Thrift Store is located at 805 North Broadway.

“We go where the need is,” said Captain Mike Lucas. Lucas, along with his wife, oversee the Salvation Army for this area.

The Salvation Army provides a variety of services including utility assistance, emergency shelter, food, and clothing.

“Some of the funds for utility assistance come from this area, but the majority of it comes from the actual utility services. We get anywhere from $200 to $400 a month, mostly during the winter months,” Lucas said.

One of the Salvation Army’s busiest times of the year is Christmas. The Angel Tree is a program through the Salvation Army that provides Christmas presents for those in need.

“We’ve not really ever turned anyone down unless they are signed up somewhere else. We put the angel on the tree with the person’s information. Many of the angels are adopted out by organizations or businesses.

“We have just under 500 Angels this year,” Lucas said. “About 100 of them are from Coal County, but the rest are from Pontotoc county. I don’t know what is left on the tree at Wal-Mart, but so far we’ve only had about 100 of the angels turned in.”

The deadline to turn in Angel Tree gifts is Friday, Dec. 14. The gifts can be dropped off at Wal-Mart or at the Thrift Store. The Salvation Army also has the women’s auxiliary that hosts an annual silver tea to help provide funds for Christmas assistance.

Some of the Salvation Army’s other programs include youth activities.

“We have Girl Guards and Adventure Core. Both are like cub scouts, but they are a lot more Christ centered,” Lucas said.

The Salvation Army provides some emergency services as well.

“Usually when there is a house fire we try to help the people replace furniture and other items by taking them through the thrift store.”

The Salvation Army Thrift Store recently moved to a new location in the Broadway Plaza. The donations that come in through the store are a crucial source of income.

“Last year we brought in about $90,000 from the thrift store, which includes about $60,000 in cash. The rest is from sending people to the store to get items as assistance. We receive really good donations and in the new location we are able to keep the donations longer,” said Capt. Lucas.

Another major source of income for the Salvation Army is through the Ada Regional United Way.

“The United Way usually gives us around $15,000 every year,” said. “It is a big portion of money that helps provide utility assistance, food, and shelter for a lot of people. We wouldn’t be able to provide as many services without the help of the United Way.”

This Week's Circulars