BUCKHANNON — The Salvation Army of Buckhannon has remained open for at least two days a week during the pandemic, providing food services to anyone in the community. Anyone in Upshur County, no matter if they have an ongoing file with the Salvation Army previously or if they were recently affected by job loss, may come to them for help.
The local Salvation Army will resume their five days per week regular scheduled hours, but they have adapted to recent restrictions to ensure the safety of the neighbors and staff. They are in full operations, but all utility assistance is by appointment only. Call (304) 472-6165 to schedule an appointment. In-house food services are on a regular schedule, but if the capacity is full, services will also be offered through the side pantry door. The Salvation Army of Buckhannon is limited to the amount of donations they are accepting daily, so they ask for those wishing to donate to please call ahead. Employees are still following sanitization procedures and operating in-store at a limited capacity.
The Salvation Army is currently welcoming meal maker donations, such as corn bread, canned meats, oatmeal, pancake mix, hamburger helper and peanut butter. They also accept baby items 2T and above to donate. Anything else baby-related or under 2T gets donated to the WV Pregnancy Crisis Care Center.
The Salvation Army provides clothing vouchers for those with an open case file with the organization. Everyone listed on the file is offered a clothing voucher once every six months. Due to the pandemic and increased rate of children staying at home more, the DHHR will refer the family and the local Salvation Army will gladly help with emergency cases.
The Salvation Army also aids with fire assistance, with a rebuilding process, assists with homelessness by giving out homeless food bags daily, and helps with New Beginnings by donating items, such as pots and pans.
The Salvation Army also offers utility assistance, such as gas, electricity and water, for Upshur County residential bills in termination status or those who have been disconnected and need reinstated. The Salvation Army is available to help with security deposits, rent or mortgage payments as well. These services are dependent upon when federal grant money is available. The local Salvation Army is currently working alongside the Parish House in regard to Phase 37 and CARES Act grant funding, in hopes it will be available for use in the next 30 days. This assistance is only available to Upshur County residents.
The Salvation Army has made necessary accommodations to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Donations are by appointment only and handled with guidelines set by the Upshur-Buckhannon Health Department. They are equipped with masks, and the staff sanitizes carts and counters after every use. The store is closed from 12:30-1 p.m. every afternoon for cleaning and is currently limited to no more than 10 people in the store at one time to ensure social distancing. They also have shields and arrows in place for safety precautions. All file updates have been paused to prevent transferring paper back and forth. The food service for the pantry is around the side of the pantry with a shower curtain in place to block any spread.