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One in 3 central Iowans doesn't earn enough to cover basic expenses without support. Most of those struggling work full-time, often at more than one job.
A parent shouldn’t have to choose between feeding a child and paying a utility bill or the rent, but unfortunately, these are the kinds of impossible choices that families living in poverty face every day. Thousands of families in Des Moines struggle to put enough food on their tables or pay their bills each day.
Short-term solutions like infant care and material assistance provide immediate help for families who are homeless, living in poverty or facing a financial crisis. We also offer Pathway of Hope, a long-term program specifically aimed at breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty.
Infant Care and Material Assistance
These family services help 1,850 households annually in the greater Des Moines area. The Infant Care Center provides emergency supplies of formula and disposable diapers, while material assistance includes utility, rent and mortgage payment support as well as household items, clothing and furniture.
Prison Toy Lift
Each year the Prison Toy Lift provides Christmas gifts to children whose mothers are incarcerated at the Iowa Correctional Institute for Women, a medium security prison located 25 miles east of Des Moines in Mitchellville.
Pathway of Hope
Pathway of Hope is based at The Salvation Army Citadel Worship and Service Center but serves families in Polk, Warren and Dallas Counties. The goal of the program is to guide families with children 18 years and younger through crisis and instability to a place of security in order to ultimately break the generational cycle of poverty. Teams work to build community for Pathway families, enabling them to connect with many Salvation Army programs and community resources.