Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

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Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

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Honor the Memory of Someone Special Image

Honor the Memory of Someone Special

Add a name to the Golden Kettle Memorial and The Salvation Army will honor their memory with our service in 2024 and #fdlgoldenkettles will shine with their light.

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“Don’t forget that maybe you are the lighthouse in someone’s storm.” Anonymous



Captain Christina & Lt. Daniel Champlin bring hearts for service as big as their smiles to Fond du Lac Salvation Army. Pop into the Corps. & share a smile with them!

Who we Are IN 2024


Click here to watch Captain Christina's powerful explanation of our vision for 2024 and beyond.


The Salvation Army is made to be adjusted to what the community needs at the time.

Over it’s rich history, around the world, The Salvation Army has been continually readapting to meet the present need, all with whatever small resources it had. Over it’s last 158 year history, The Salvation Army has operated legal services, hospitals, orphanages, grocery stores, all designed toward the poor. The Salvation Army has often moved in and out of major disasters like Hurricane Katrina, the 9/11 attacks, and many more disasters with very little recognition. We go where the need is. We start something new because there is a gap. Where once we stood alone in a place of service, others have risen up to take on those services. Even through a pandemic, we did not stop helping our community. We continued to step into the need.

We have a history of "firsts" in our 133 years (and counting) serving Fond du Lac County. From the sliding fee childcare, to the Samaritan Free Health Clinic, the brown bag lunch program, and Operation Back to School started in our building. A few outgrew us and have continued forward. So, when the City asked us to serve as a  host of the winter warming shelter, we said, yes. This is what we do.

We have spent the last 7 years, working toward just being a part of giving someone a warm place to sleep. That’s critical work. But we also recognized that we can be a part of preventing the numbers of people experiencing homelessness from rising in our community.

For the last 7 years, The Salvation Army launched a Housing Retention Program in the Fox Cities. The people that were coming for help were ending up in crisis because of: Financial instability due to physical health, mental health, loss of job, and domestic abuse.

If COVID times taught us one thing it is that it takes one major life circumstance to knock people off their feet. After COVID, we saw more people who used to be donors now struggling and coming to us for assistance. Any one of us in this room could find ourselves homeless if the right circumstances hit us. We really want to help people in the moment of the circumstance to get them while there is still a chance to prevent them from becoming homeless.

As of October 1st, we have launched our own Housing Retention Program here in Fond Du Lac. We want to help people who are in the crisis to move forward to being financially stable. Once people become homeless, getting them into housing continues to be an issue because of the national housing crisis. Therefore, keeping people in their homes is just as essential and crucial to stopping another 6% from becoming homeless here. We have to help to stop the bleeding. For those that enter into the housing retention program, they will be able to get assistance with their rent or mortgage for an extended period of time, along with supportive case management, goal planning, money management, employment, and a circle of support surrounding and believing in them.  

The Salvation Army in the Fox Cities took a risk and shifted and have seen 92% of those entering the program, successfully complete the program. 96% of those that have entered the program have found housing stability. These same families were still in stable housing after a year of exiting the Housing Retention Program.


Pathway of Hope:

In addition to Housing Retention, our Pathway of Hope program will be expanded to include more families. Pathway of Hope is a one-on-one case management mentoring program that guides a family through a crisis, sets goals and creates an environment where the family is confident in their ability to improve their future and thrive. A family in crisis with the desire and ability to commit to changing their circumstances is partnered with a professionally trained caseworker - mentor. They become a team. With regular meetings and lots of encouragement, the team, works together to overcome obstacles, reach goals, and begin to set a pathway forward to a better future. It can change the course of a family’s life.

Addiction Recovery:

While not everyone who experiences homelessness struggles with an alcohol or substance abuse problem, there are a percentage that do. We have seen this firsthand with those we serve in the warming shelter. We want to offer solutions for those that are ready to take their lives back and to get and stay clean. For those that are ready, we commit to connecting and transporting them to one of our Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers.

The Salvation Army’s Adult Rehabilitation Centers are 180-day residential work-therapy programs providing spiritual, social, and emotional assistance to people who have lost the ability to cope with their problems and provide for themselves.

Just this year, we have had 5 people who stated that they were ready to make that change. Our staff is currently working with a woman right now who has been struggling for years and has finally decided that now is the time. Two of our staff are trained substance abuse counselors and are walking alongside her to get her to our Adult Rehabilitation Center where she can begin to turn her life around. This can only come because of the caring and supportive staff that we have that truly cares about those we serve.

Emergency Assistance:

While we are beginning new things, we will, of course, continue to offer emergency assistance including: food, clothing, household items, city bus passes, work boots, access to laundry, to help those who need that support. We continue to host our seasonal programs as well, including: Coats for Kids, Christmas Angel Tree Program, Back to School resources, and the summer Brown Bag Lunch Program.

Deep instead of Wide takes time:

Over the years, we have done a lot of good work in the community, helping many individuals and families in crisis. We have helped with the band aid fix. We helped lots of people with a little and it made a big impact in that moment for someone but a small impact in the scope of helping to really create change in their circumstances. As we move forward with our new approach, we are pulling back from putting a heavy emphasis on the emergency services and moving toward shifting into a greater emphasis on the whole person, the whole circumstance, the whole family.

What you can expect?

Our statistics may look different but the impact will be deeper

It takes time to build something new. It is always a slow start. However, each year, we will be able to measure the growth and impact and be able to unfold the next goals for the next year.

We believe that the longer-term effects will ripple – we will be able to share those successes as they come.

Creating a Culture to Innovate and Adapt:

Phase One – Shift our Model: Roll out Housing Retention Program & Addiction Recovery Options

Phase Two – Shift ourselves: Training, Renovations, Dream Meetings, Invite those we serve to the table, Advisory Board Partners

Phase Three – Build it Up: Peer to Peer Support (Hope Nights, Celebrate Recovery, Mentorship Program, Create a family of support)

Phase Four – Keep adapting and growing as it evolves to continue meeting needs

Why is this different?

  • Prevention instead of crisis
  •  Trying to address the root problems instead of just the crisis. Instead of focusing merely on the results of the crisis, we are helping to stop the bleeding before the crisis becomes chronic.
  • Continued support, even past the exit of the program.
  • Incredible staff

The National Alliance to End Homelessness estimates a person experiencing chronic homelessness costs the taxpayer an average of $35,000 a year (2016). 12 households of 4 served through housing retention means a $1 .6 million savings.

We do a lot with a little. Imagine what we could do with a lot.

We hope that you can get behind us and support this new chapter in our history of service to our community.  If you have questions, please contact us.  


To learn more, click here.


Captain Christina and Lieutenant Daniel Champlin

How blessed are we to have all their experience and compassion helping us continue "Doing the Most Good" in Fond du Lac!

a brief look into our History

The way we help has changed over the course of our 130 years. We’ve adjusted our focus many times to respond to community need, for as long as needed, most notably:

  • Opening and operating Kindercare in 1973-2008 to offer quality, affordable childcare;
  • Beginning FDL Operation Back to School in 1989 to offer free school supplies (now Back to School FDL)
  • Creating the Brown Bag Lunch program in 1993 to offer free lunches in summer (the program distributed over 13,000 lunches in 2019)
  • Partnering with St. Agnes Hospital to begin free healthcare through The Samaritan Free Health Clinic in 1993
  • Opening The Salvation Army Warming Shelter in 2015 to offer free winter shelter for homeless adults

Get in Touch

The Salvation Army Fond du Lac
237 N. Macy St.
Fond du Lac, WI 54935
(920) 923-8220