AARP Oklahoma Executive Council member Dr. John Edwards; State Senator Ron Sharp, R-Shawnee; AARP Oklahoma State Director Sean Voskuhl; Salvation Army Lt. Philip Canning; AARP Oklahoma Associate State Director Mashell Sourjohn and Shawnee Mayor West Mainord

AARP Oklahoma Executive Council member Dr. John Edwards; State Senator Ron Sharp, R-Shawnee; AARP Oklahoma State Director Sean Voskuhl; Salvation Army Lt. Philip Canning; AARP Oklahoma Associate State Director Mashell Sourjohn and Shawnee Mayor West Mainord

 

(SHAWNEE, Okla.) – AARP Oklahoma  announced it has donated $60,000 to the Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command to help older Oklahomans recover from the devastating May tornadoes.

“AARP is committed to long-term recovery efforts and will continue to work with organizations like the Salvation Army to help the victims affected by these disasters,” said AARP Oklahoma State Director Sean Voskuhl. “There are still many unmet needs, particularly among older Oklahomans. We are pleased to make this donation to help continue the recovery process. Our thoughts and prayers remain with the victims as they struggle to rebuild and recover.”

 

Within hours of the May storms, AARP Foundation established an Oklahoma relief fund to support victims. AARP and AARP Foundation matched dollar-for-dollar contributions up to $300,000 resulting in a total of $674,000 raised from more than 6,000 people, Voskuhl said.

 

All organizations receiving grants have signed a letter of agreement and submitted a plan detailing how they will use funding to help storm victims. In addition, grantees have committed that 100% of funds will be used for direct assistance in Oklahoma and no portion will be used for administrative costs. Each organization will send a final report to AARP detailing the full expenditure of its grant money.

 

“In Oklahoma, The Salvation Army has seen a new level of need. As we transition to long-term recovery efforts, we are incorporating experiences we have learned from past disaster response operations, but looking forward, we may encounter a need that is new and unplanned,” said Major Steve Morris, Arkansas-Oklahoma Divisional Commander. “We are very grateful to AARP, and all of our donors, for their generous support in response to this spring’s devastating tornadoes.”

 

The Salvation Army is transitioning its disaster relief operation to long-term recovery for families and individuals who have been impacted by the tornadoes, floods and other severe weather in Oklahoma throughout the month of May 2013. Recovery services, which will include everything from food and financial assistance to emotional care and rebuilding efforts, will continue for at least the next 24 months. The Salvation Army will utilize “2013 Oklahoma Storm” donations and work alongside other relief organizations to ensure that all needs are met.

 

Voskuhl said AARP will continue to participate in long-term recovery committees in Pottawatomie and Oklahoma/Cleveland counties and has established an AARP Oklahoma Disaster Relief Team that will mobilize when needed in the future. To learn more about AARP’s Disaster Relief Team, call 1-866-295-7277.

The donation to the Salvation Army is the 10th of 11 the association has made to help those impacted by tornadoes in communities across Oklahoma. Other grants have been made to: United Way of Pottawatomie County, the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, Rebuilding Together OKC, Legal Aid Service of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Indian Missionary Conference, Aging Services, Inc., the Oklahoma City Community Foundation and Areawide Aging Agency, Inc.

 

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 130 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a broad array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.