HILO >> The Salvation Army has mustered its considerable experience in disaster relief by coordinating food service and providing three meals a day to volcano evacuees at American Red Cross shelters at the Pahoa Community Center, Pahoa Senior Center and Keaau Armory.
As of June 19, 30,964 meals had been served, including 5,943 vegetarian meals, according to a news release.
Hawaii Community College’s culinary arts program recently became a partner in the relief effort, preparing breakfast, lunch and dinner several times week for 300 people, the release said. The meals use ingredients grown by the college’s agriculture program at its farm site in Panaewa, with the Planning, Operations and Maintenance Department assisting with delivery of food from the Hilo campus to the shelters.
Although local businesses and restaurants have donated food and services, the Salvation Army is spending an average of $35,000 per week in meal purchases from the college and other food establishments, the release said.
Monetary donations are vital to support the shelter meal service. The nonprofit organization uses 100 percent of donations designated “disaster relief” in support of disaster operations, including ongoing assistance being provided on Hawaii island and on Kauai and Oahu, where residents were displaced by April flooding. To donate, visit hawaii.salvationarmy.org.
Donations also can be made at Bank of Hawaii, First Hawaiian Bank and Central Pacific Bank branches.