A letter to our donors, volunteers and friends,
We’re sharing information here for our donors, volunteers, and other friends and supporters regarding the closure of a Salvation Army Correctional Services program in Pinellas County:
The Salvation Army of Florida has had a long-term, beneficial relationship with Pinellas County, part of which was providing a service for Courts & Correctional Services program participants. Our Florida administrative office (Divisional Headquarters) assisted the County for more than 35 years by operating the misdemeanor program, which was reviewed regularly by County officials, in Pinellas County. The Salvation Army’s Correctional Services were provided at no cost to the County.
The Salvation Army’s correctional services were beneficial to the County in that many program participants completed community service hours with other nonprofit organizations. This was also a beneficial arrangement for many participating in the Courts & Correctional Services program as they often required additional services. Because The Salvation Army provides individual case management, the correction counselors were able to share information on social services in Pinellas County. Program participants were referred to other agencies as needed.
It was the County’s choice to not to seek bids from other agencies for operating the program. The contract included an out-clause the County could have exercised at any time, but did not as The Salvation Army followed all elements of the contract. Our provision of services was not the issue; instead, the County chose to centralize all Courts & Correctional Services and not renew the contract.
Recent articles misstated that 12% of the fees were paid to The Salvation Army’s National Headquarters. That is not the case. These were administrative fees for the operation of the program by Divisional Headquarters. The Salvation Army continues to have one of the lowest administrative costs of any large nonprofit. Of every dollar donated, 82 cents go directly to programs and services, rather than administration or fundraising.
No donor funds were used in the Correctional Services program; it was a fee-based program, with the fees being set by Pinellas County, not by The Salvation Army.
In the last 120 years, The Salvation Army has had incredible, life-changing impact in communities across Tampa Bay. In 2012 alone, The Salvation Army provided:
Approximately 163,000 nights of shelter for homeless men, women, and children.
More than 577,000 meals to hungry men, women, and children.
Emergency assistance, such as rent and utility payments, for hundreds of working poor families.
Backpacks and school supplies to more than 1,000 Tampa Bay students in need.
Summer Camp for nearly 500 low-income and at-risk children.
More than 61,000 Angel Tree gifts and toys for thousands of Tampa Bay children living in poverty.
We will continue to follow our mission of meeting human need in Jesus’ name without
discrimination and our promise of Doing the Most Good to the most people in the most need.
The Salvation Army wishes the best for the Pinellas County Courts & Correctional Services program, its staff and participants, and the Sheriff’s Office as it takes on this new endeavor.
For additional information on Salvation Army locations, programs, and services across Tampa Bay, please see www.salvationarmytampabay.org.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in 1865, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for 130 years in the United
States. Nearly 30 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. 82 cents of every dollar spent is used to carry out those services in 5,000 communities nationwide. For more
information, go to www.salvationarmyusa.org.