The Salvation Army Responds to Worst Refugee Crisis Since World War II

Staff and volunteers on the ground serving physical, emotional and spiritual needs in Europe


ALEXANDRIA, VA (September 16, 2015) – The Salvation Army is providing food, shelter, medical aid, legal assistance, and emotional and spiritual care to refugees and migrants in 13 European countries. According to the International Organization for Migration, more than 360,000 refugees and migrants have crossed the Mediterranean Sea in the first eight months of 2015, representing more than a 63 percent increase over the yearly total in 2014.


“It’s our ethical and humanitarian responsibility to provide support to individuals and families fleeing their homelands in crisis,” said Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Bowers, National Secretary of The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO). “In partnership with our International Headquarters and the help of staff and volunteers in local communities, we have been able to meet refugees with compassion and hope.”
With a significant presence throughout Europe, The Salvation Army is uniquely positioned to provide support to refugees and local residents. Active relief efforts are taking place in Greece, Italy, France, The Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Hungary, Switzerland, Germany and Finland. The Salvation Army also is working to provide support to refugees and migrants in Romania, Russia and the United Kingdom.
In the United States, President Barack Obama has asked his administration to receive additional Syrian refugees. The Salvation Army in the United States is preparing to meet the increased demand on social services. “Our number one priority is to meet human need wherever it exists,” said Lieutenant Colonel Ron Busroe, National Community Relations and Development Secretary for The Salvation Army.
To learn more about our humanitarian effort to support refugees and migrants, or to make a contribution to support our services, please visit sawso.org.


Monetary donations are the most critical need to help refugees and migrants. The Salvation Army has set up a designated fund for relief efforts in Europe. During times of disaster, 100 percent of every dollar donated supports response and relief efforts. To give, visit salar.my/RefugeeGive or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769). Check donations to Salvation Army World Service Office (designate “Refugees in Europe”) can be sent to:
International Relief Fund
P.O. Box 418558
Boston, MA 02241-8558
In-kind donations are not being accepted for the refugee crises, however; your local Salvation Army is always in need of gently used items for resale in our Thrift & Family Stores. For the nearest location, please go to satruck.org .
Occasionally, conditions in the field may alter relief activities. If this occurs, The Salvation Army will direct funds to our International relief efforts in the region.

About The Salvation Army World Service Office (SAWSO)
SAWSO is committed to working hand-in-hand with local communities to help people who face challenges every day in countries around the globe. Created in 1977 as an independent 501(c)(3) to support the ministry of The Salvation Army, SAWSO has been strengthening global communities in need for nearly 38 years. SAWSO supports The Salvation Army’s impressive global footprint in 127 countries, developing long-term community-driven solutions to issues in the areas of Community Health & HIV Prevention, Livelihood & Empowerment, Anti-Human-Trafficking, Disaster Relief & Recovery, and Education. To learn more, go to sawso.org.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 135 years in the United States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter for the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. For more information, visit SalvationArmyUSA.org