Need knows no season

BY WILLIAM SELOVER – 

 

Frank Jordan speaks at San Francisco Harbor Light

(Note: Former San Francisco Mayor Frank Jordan spoke recently at the Harbor Light Center Year 2000 award dinner. Some of his comments follow.)

“I have nothing but the utmost respect for The Salvation Army and the Harbor Light Center,” said former mayor Frank Jordan. “Over the years, I have been able to taste something of the exuberance, the passion and the determination of those who minister to the people at the Harbor Light. I have seen it and observed it personally. From emergency services rendered in major incidents like earthquakes, serious fires, explosions and other high profile human tragedies, to the daily caring for individuals on a one-to-one basis as the needs arise.

“Your strong belief and deep sense is that service to others should be central to our lives and that it also takes courage and faith to make the story of the Good Samaritan a living reality.

“Harbor Light has formed a unique partnership with our city as caring people who uplift the dignity of those who are needing help or seeking a second chance in life. You are a bridge over the chasm for people who feel isolation, rejection, loneliness, despair and sometimes lack of self worth. You use powerful ways to effectively communicate your message that touches the lives of so many–the power of compassion, respect and empathy.

“You provide a supportive environment where people can regain purpose and fulfillment in their lives. You have learned that words of comfort skillfully administered are the oldest therapy known to man. Harbor Light Center represents a voice for the voiceless and a renewed hope for the future….many come with emotional and physical scars which are soothed by unconditional love as well as state of the art recovery methods. You are experts in hope, re-energizing clients to attain self-sufficiency. A realistic hope, rooted in your confidence in the God-given capacity of individuals to choose and to change.”

Recognizing ‘need knows no season,’ The Salvation Army in San Francisco invested more than $14.5 million in programs and activities during the past year, up nearly $1 million from the previous year.

“The Salvation Army in San Francisco was able to touch the lives of many individuals in need of assistance over the last year–reaching 75,336 children, women and men–in children’s campership programs, after school recreational programs, food box and food delivery programs to the housebound or handicapped, transitional housing, and alcohol, drug and HIV detoxification programs,” said Lt. Colonel Bettie Love, San Francicso city administrator and director of women’s organizations.

“We were also able to provide vital senior residential housing and social services activities, holiday assistance, and parenting classes and counseling,” she added. “We are grateful to report that individual contributions to our efforts in the city reached a new high point–in both volunteer activities and monetary gifts.

Love reports that last year’s annual Christmas celebrity bell ringing event generated unprecedented support from individuals and from city, state and federal elected officials, as well as from local businesses and celebrities, raising more than $30,000 for support of citywide programs.

Last year, the Army’s administration of social services was centralized under a single Family Services department to provide a wider range of services and more efficient delivery of those services. Major program centers are: the Turk Street Community Center, the Yerba Buena Senior Activities Center, the Mission community Center, the Silvercrest Residence for Seniors, the Chinatown Community Center, and the Korean Community Center.

Last year, nearly 600 children attended summer day camp programs at Army community centers, and 47,623 young people benefited from various year-round programs at youth community centers, including after school programs, day care and youth and musical instruction programs.

The Army’s food box program assisted 9,473 families, and holiday assistance helped 12,408 individuals. Transitional housing helped 1,524 individuals and job placement and assistance were provided to 1,692.

More than 180 men and women were treated in Salvation Army alcohol, drug and HIV detoxification programs, and 2,564 participated in its residential recovery program. Nearly 1,130 people took advantage of Salvation Army support groups, parenting classes and counseling.

Assisting the Army were 10,778 volunteers in San Francisco who invested 60,856 hours supporting its programs.

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