A Lifeline in Times of Need
Beatriz first came to The Salvation Army through the women’s ministry, not knowing how much the organization would one day come to mean to her and her family.
Ten years ago, when she was a mom of two young kids, a relative invited Beatriz to a women’s ministry gathering at the Army’s Chicago Lawn Corps Community Center. Beatriz enjoyed making arts and crafts while chatting with the other ladies. “I loved it,” she said. Soon she was attending church at the Chicago Lawn corps and volunteering with some of their programs.
Today, Beatriz has two more kids, and her household has expanded to eight members – she and her husband, their four children (ranging in age from 15 to nearly 1 year old), and her husband’s parents. Add in a global pandemic and her husband’s ongoing health issues, and life has gotten a bit more complicated.
Over the years, The Salvation Army has expanded from a source for relational and spiritual enrichment to a lifeline in times of need.
For years now the family has participated in the Army’s Angel Tree program, which provides Christmas presents to children, teens, and seniors who otherwise wouldn’t receive them. Beatriz fondly remembers the instant camera her daughter Jaqueline, now 8, received through Angel Tree. “She loved it!” Beatriz said. “The children love everything they receive. Angel Tree has been a real blessing from God.”
Last year, before Beatriz gave birth to their youngest child, a son, the Army gave her diapers, baby wipes, and baby clothes. This was in the days before COVID-19, when they could have a baby shower and celebrate the new life. “It helped a lot,” Beatriz said. “It was a blessing.”
As it did to many, the coronavirus brought challenges to the family. During this time, her husband was hospitalized for four months due to ongoing health issues. Without his pay during this time, the family had a hard time keeping food on the table and paying their rent. Thankfully, The Salvation Army provided needed groceries through their food pantry as well as rent assistance.
Beatriz’s husband is now home and doing well. Their youngest child will celebrate his first birthday soon. And the entire family anticipates the joy of Christmas morning, which will once again include gifts provided by Angel Tree, even as they’ll all miss being able to attend Christmas services at their Salvation Army church in person this year.
Still, they are grateful for all the Army means to them. “It’s very good assistance,” Beatriz said. “We really appreciate it. The Salvation Army helps us a lot.”
Rescue Christmas for Our Neighbors in Need
For tax purposes: The Salvation Army Metropolitan Division EIN is 36-2167910.