Celebrating National Salvation Army Week
May 15–21, 2023

By Warren L. Maye

In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower officially proclaimed a week to appreciate The Salvation Army, a branch of the Christian Church, which has for 154 years exemplified the message of Christ in its many services to people in need worldwide. Today, the Army annually serves approximately 24 million people in the United States in nearly 7,000 communities.

Eisenhower’s proclamation may cover only a week’s observance, but Salvationists, employees, and volunteers effectively offer practical as well as spiritual help whenever manmade and natural disasters threaten families. The organization also provides a wide variety of social services, such as food, shelter, clothing, and counseling—each day of the week.

The need for such services is greater than it appears. According to the U.S. Census Bureau for 2023, there are 37.9 million Americans living in poverty, accounting for 11.6 percent of the total population. Many experts say that this number falls short of measuring the actual population who struggle in poverty today.

Monday after Mother’s Day

The National Salvation Army Week observance typically begins on the Monday after Mother’s Day. It is a wonderful opportunity to say “thank you” to everyone who has contributed their time, talent, and treasure to the cause of helping others in need.

“Among Americans, The Salvation Army has long been a symbol of wholehearted dedication to the cause of human brotherhood,” said President Eisenhower. “In time of war, the men and women of this organization have brought to those serving their country far from home, friendliness, and warm concern.

“In the quieter days of peace, their work has been a constant reminder to us all that each of us is neighbor and kin to all Americans. Giving freely of themselves, the men and women of The Salvation Army have won the respect of us all.”

How to observe National Salvation Army Week

  • Thank a Salvation Army officer, volunteer or employee.
  • Donate
  • Share your Salvation Army story.
  • Read about Army history.
  • Join in the celebration by visiting salvationarmyusa.org.
  • Use #NationalSalvationArmyWeek to share on social media.

Source: The Salvation Army