Tupelo Salvation Army providing extra beds for homeless people

The ministry wants to make sure that everyone who wants a warm bed on a cold night has one available

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – The area’s only homeless shelter is doing its part to make sure that anyone who wants a warm place to sleep is taken care of.

Janice Lesley is thankful the Salvation Army has provided her with a warm bed on these cold nights.

“If you ain’t got a place to go this is the perfect place to go, they will find you a place to bed your head. And they got good food here,” Lesley said.

Lesley is one of 65 people who sought refuge from the cold at the Jim Ingram Red Shield Lodge. Whenever the temperature drops below 37 degrees, extra beds are available for anyone who wants one.

And during the day, the warming shelter is open for anyone who wants to stay. Captain Rob Dolby said it’s about providing shelter for the homeless, and also saving lives.

“Last year we had zero people freeze to death in Tupelo and we want to say we’re a community who doesn’t leave anyone behind, especially when it gets to the point of a life-saving ministry,” Capt. Dolby said.

The Salvation Army partners with the community for ministry.

Volunteers from Alabaster Bag Ministry helped serve lunch to anyone needing a hot meal. They come to the Salvation Army every Wednesday to serve and give out clothes, blankets, and other seasonal items.

“The Lord is good, we give Him all the glory, and we are thankful for what we get to do. They matter, they belong and they are loved and we want the community to know that,” said Wynn Coley, of Alabaster Bag Ministry.

Captain Dolby said the familiar Red Kettle campaign provides a lot of resources for the day-to-day ministry of the Salvation Army throughout the year.

“You will see the bell ringers at the mall and different locations. When you hear that bell ringing if the Lord puts it on your heart to put a dollar or two in that kettle, know that 90 cents from that dollar is going directly to provide services for programs right here,” Dolby said.

Captain Dolby said the Salvation Army will continue to meet the needs of the homeless and the food insecure, with a lot of faith, prayers, and help from the community.

The Tupelo Salvation Army typically serves around 200 meals daily. And they are preparing for their annual Thanksgiving Day lunch when more than 3,000 meals will be served.

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