Woman explains why she donated stimulus check

Apr 30, 2020

Elaine Foote-Blum could have spent her $1,200 government stimulus check on clothes, or furniture, or plenty of other things. Instead, she chose to donate the money to The Salvation Army.  

Elaine (pictured) is a widow and retired pastor who lives in Pine River, Minn. She attends church and volunteers at the Brainerd Lakes Salvation Army, where she sees firsthand how The Salvation Army is on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis, providing food and support for countless people in need.  

“(Coronavirus) is a matter of life and death for some people,” Elaine said. “I can’t be a nurse, and I can’t be a doctor. But donating is something I can do.” Donate now.

Not long ago, Elaine had no money to donate to anyone. She’d struggled with debt her entire life. In 2015, she took control of her finances with help from budgeting programs and support groups. 

“Before that, I had no savings,” Elaine admitted. “I was in so much debt that I couldn’t even afford to pay my taxes. And now, look what Jesus did.” 

Elaine agreed to share her story in hopes that it would inspire others to donate a portion of their stimulus check to help people struggling due to the COVID-19 crisis.  

“I would like for people to give me no praise,” she said. “God, in His perfect timing, got me to this point where I could let go of $1,200.”

Elaine is not the only person to donate an unexpected windfall. On Wednesday, Jacqueline Copenhaver of Stillwater, Minn. donated $500 worth of Cub gift cards that she won for raising more than $500 during last weekend’s Salvation Army Virtual Walk for Good.   

“I was really glad to get to do this,” said Jacqueline, who regularly volunteers at two food shelves, including the West 7th Salvation Army in St. Paul. “I haven’t been able to volunteer lately…so it was really fun to get to double the gift.”

Those who would like to donate their stimulus funds are reminded to first take care of their own needs and their loved ones. Then, if you’d like to share what’s left with others in need, The Salvation Army would be honored to help. Donate now.

Please join The Salvation Army in serving those affected by the COVID-19 crisis by giving a donation or signing up to volunteer. Your help will provide emergency assistance and hope for people and families in desperate need.

If you are feeling lonely, fearful or hopeless due to the COVID-19 crisis, call our Emotional and Spiritual Care Hotline at 877-220-4195 anytime between 8 a.m.–8 p.m. Central Time. Trained Salvation Army officers, employees and volunteers will be available to talk, listen to you, and pray for you. 


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