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Northwest Arkansas

Volunteer Spotlight: Maggie Berry

July 2, 2018

Volunteer Spotlight: Maggie Berry, Rogers, Arkansas

When Maggie Berry retired after 40 years as a medical professional, she wasn’t exactly sure how she would use her free time to make a difference, but she had a few ideas. With a love for arts and crafts and a desire to restore forgotten or used items, Maggie said that God laid it on her heart to share her time with The Salvation Army of Northwest Arkansas.

It didn’t take long for store manager Kari Luff to find the perfect place for Maggie to begin creating – the extra stock room at the Rogers Family Thrift store. This room is a gathering place for donated wreaths, ribbon spools, floral arrangements, and various odds and ends. Often, it is where items that need a little TLC or some extra glue end up. For Maggie, this space has become a sanctuary where she can create, restore and find a way to share kindness through creative design.

During the past three months, Maggie has volunteered more than 100 hours. If you stop by our store, it won’t take long for you to find an item that she has fixed, designed or restored.  From custom-painted shutters to refurbished tables and chairs, to carefully designed wreaths, gift baskets, and windows, there seems to be no limit to what she can do, much to her surprise. “I didn’t even know I could do all this stuff,” Maggie shared with a laugh. “Sometimes you get so stuck in a rut and think you can do only one thing, but you can do so much more.” For Maggie, retirement has allowed her to reconnect with her creative side, and she is enjoying every moment.

When asked why she volunteers Maggie’s answer is simple, “I volunteer because God gave me these wonderful gifts and skills that I can use to help people. For me, it is about spreading kindness, and our world needs a little more kindness.”

Volunteering with The Salvation Army helps Maggie get to know her community better. Each week, she talks with customers, staff and the men who are in part of The Salvation Army’s rehabilitation program.   In many ways, Maggie’s work represents the transformation that is happening in the lives of so many people but especially for the men in our recovery program who came to The Salvation Army to find hope and healing.

“Our society is such a throwaway world. We want to throw away things that are used or broken – even if they might still be useful. For me, it is wonderful to see how you can repurpose or reuse something and shared kindness at the same time,” Maggie shared.

Proceeds the pieces Maggie restores, and other items purchased at The Salvation Army stores, help provide food, shelter, and resources to support our free drug and alcohol recovery program. If you have an interest in volunteering, let us know, we’d love to get you connected with our team. Learn more about volunteering with The Salvation Army of NWA at www.nwasalvationarmy.org/volunteering.

Red Kettle Wrap Up for 2017

January 5, 2018

For the 2017 giving season, The Salvation Army of Northwest Arkansas raised $361,829 as part of its annual Red Kettle campaign. Donations collected at Kettle locations in Northwest Arkansas equaled $352,161 with an additional $9,668 coming in through online gifts for this campaign. We concluded our Kettle season at 86.1% of our goal of $420,000.

“We want to thank each community in Northwest Arkansas for their generosity this year. As the kettle season came to an end, we asked for your continued support and many people stepped up to help make a difference. Your financial support will allow us to continue to provide for people when they need it most. This means providing shelter from the cold, food for the hungry, clothing and utility assistance for families, and hope for men seeking to break free from the bondage of addiction. We enter 2018 with much anticipation as we look for new ways to meet the needs of people here in Northwest Arkansas,” said Captain Joshua Robinett, Area Commander, Northwest Arkansas

Not only did people give generously this season as part of our Red Kettle campaign by many companies, churches, groups and families gave their time as bell ringers to make a difference. Thank you to everyone who joined us this Christmas season.

 

Come See Our New Look

July 31, 2017

We are so excited to roll out the photos of our updated lobby at Area Command. The 80’s paint is out and a fresh, modern look now takes its place! Check out the before and after below!

  
A little paint in progress- sprucing up the place with Salvation Army colors!

TA-DA!!! The completed look!
Come visit us soon!

Summer Camp: Fun, Friends, Escape.

July 11, 2017

As children, many of us looked forward to summer break with great excitement and anticipation for vacations and beach trips, camps, our favorite snacks and NO SCHOOL!!

But for some kids, summer is not a time to anticipate.
It brings instability: home life is tumultuous at best with absent parents and no connection with friends. It brings uncertainty: many wonder if there will be food on the table for their next meal. It brings insecurity: attention is not readily given, care not automatically provided, and love not frequently spoken.

So for these kids in our community, suffering from hunger, grieving from inattention, and fearing their unpredictable lifestyle- camp is more than a fun summer activity. It is a refuge.

Camp is an experience unlike many of them have ever had!! Ropes course, swimming EVERY DAY (and yes, that is almost every camper’s favorite part of camp!), 3 meals a day, yummy snacks, new activities and fun ways of learning. They grow and change, rest and play, learn and are loved.

And even better than all of that? These kids get to hear about a love so fierce that will always be with them- even when they return home. It is a privilege to share the love of Jesus with our sweet campers.

Finally, our camp offers a really neat experience- Music Conservatory. It is a 5-week camp that teaches music theory and different types of instruments. Kids can choose their majors and are even given the chance to be leaders one day and conduct their own worship service. Interested in learning more about the amazing opportunities offered these children in their schools, homes, and futures (think college scholarships) through this program?

Read our blog on Music Programs in NWA!

So thank you for supporting our kids in their adventures at camp- it is truly life-changing for them! Want to learn more about sponsoring a child?? Email shannon.drummond@uss.salvationarmy.org.

(**All pictures from this post are local Northwest Arkansas campers from summer 2017!)

New Officers Come to NWA

June 23, 2017

The Salvation Army in Northwest Arkansas is pleased to welcome new Area Commanders, Cpts. Josh and Ashley Robinett and their family. The Robinetts are replacing Majors Dan and Mary Matthews who have been reassigned to the Area Command in Oklahoma City.

Salvation Army Officers are periodically transferred to different locations, typically every 3-4 years.  The Captains are enthusiastic leaders and come to Northwest Arkansas from Hot Springs, where for the last 2 years, they were responsible for the Hot Springs Salvation Army Corps.

Captain Josh Robinett was born and raised in Odessa, Texas. He has a deep appreciation and compassion for single-parent families, since he along with two younger siblings, were raised by a single mother. He joined The Salvation Army at the age of 8. Before answering the call to full-time ministry, he spent time in the oil field, a short time as a correctional officer and five years as a sales consultant for Quality Document Solutions in Texas. He and his wife, Ashley, were married in 2005 and answered the call to serve as officers in The Salvation Army shortly after by entering the training college in 2008. In 2010, the Robinetts finished their time at the training college with an Associates of Arts in Practical Ministries.

Captain Ashley Robinett has deep roots in Arkansas. She was born in Pine Bluff and has family residing in White Hall, Perryville and Hector. Ashley is a fourth-generation Salvationist; her parents are retired Salvation Army Majors. As a child of Officers and now one herself, Captain Ashley brings with her a well-rounded experience. The Robinetts have four children, Joshua, 11, Elizabeth, 8, Danielle, 5, and Cody, 1. As Officers, the Robinetts, have served in Russellville, AR, Fayetteville, AR, and Hot Springs, AR. They and their children look forward to returning to Northwest Arkansas to serve this great community again.

The couple will be responsible for overseeing the work done throughout Northwest Arkansas at The Salvation Army including the emergency shelters, Family Stores, the addiction recovery program, social services, churches (Corps) and Christmas efforts.