Salvation Army captain heading to Raleigh's hurricane operations center
By Shavonne Potts
SALISBURY — The local Salvation Army will send one of its own to help with hurricane relief.
Capt. Jason Smith, who heads up the Rowan County agency, is being deployed to Raleigh where he will act as a liaison for North Carolina and South Carolina at the state operations center there.
As a liaison, Smith will be the link for agencies that need help as Hurricane Irene heads toward the Carolinas.
Emergency personnel are preparing all along the East Coast and are sending disaster relief workers to areas expected to be hit by the storm.
Some residents along the coast, like Ocracoke Island on the Outer Banks, have already evacuated. The storm was upgraded Wednesday to a Category 3 storm, with winds of 120 mph, and is projected to make landfall Saturday near Cape Hatteras.
“I’ll be relaying messages to state officials about what services the Salvation Army is offering,” Smith said before heading to Raleigh.
He left Rowan County late Wednesday and is slated to stay until Tuesday, unless his deployment is extended.
The Salvation Army activated all the canteens/mobile kitchen units where volunteers and staff will are equipped to prepare 1,500 meals a day.
The Salvation Army is partnering with the American Red Cross, whose volunteers will establish emergency shelters.
“The Salvation Army will provide meals, spiritual and emotional care for the clients,” Smith said.
The Salvation Army has 30 mobile kitchen feeding canteens in the Carolinas, with 16 along and east of the Interstate 95 corridor placed on standby status with units stocked and ready to provide materials.
The last time Smith was deployed was about seven years ago when he helped provide food in the canteen for emergency workers searching for a missing person.
Others in the metrolina area, which includes Rowan, have been activated, but not deployed, Smith said.
Anyone who wants to volunteer to help provide hurricane relief must complete an online form on the agency’s website.
Smith will regularly tweet about his experiences while in Raleigh. Go to www.twitter. com/SalvationArmyRo to follow his tweets about being deployed for hurricane relief.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.
Salvation Army updates
For the latest on the Salvation Army response to Hurricane Irene go to:
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