Survey findings and documentary kick off organization's Red Shield
Campaign - "Poverty Shouldn't Be a Life Sentence"
TORONTO, May 5 /CNW/ - The Salvation Army has released a report with
findings from a national study on homelessness in Canada. The report -
"Poverty Shouldn't be a Life Sentence" - is based on information from surveys
of hundreds of homeless men living in Salvation Army shelter care between
2007-2008 and finds that factors such as employment, income, healthcare and
housing continue to adversely affect the marginalized throughout Canada.
These findings show that nearly 30 percent of homeless men are employed
and nearly two-thirds receive money from some source of welfare or a job, yet
many still find themselves within the shelter care system. The findings
conclude that a national housing strategy, which includes social services,
like job training, health care and counseling, must be prioritized by federal
officials in order to end the cycle of poverty.
"Our study found that there's an immediate demand for affordable
housing," said Commissioner William W. Francis, Territorial Commander of The
Salvation Army in Canada and Bermuda "But, housing by itself, will not solve
homelessness. It's only through a strong foundation of social supports that
homeless individuals can begin to transition out of poverty and into permanent
The report - "Poverty Shouldn't be a Life Sentence" - is the cornerstone
of The Salvation Army's Red Shield Campaign, which officially begins today.
Throughout the month of May, the campaign will raise funds to support
Salvation Army programs - particularly the more than 3.5 million people
currently living in poverty. To spread public awareness, The Salvation Army
has released a debut documentary, "One Day of Hope," on its Web site:
www.SalvationArmy.ca. The film, which was directed by Hubert Davis from
Untitled Films, gives a day-in-the-life look at the people and places that
make up The Salvation Army's shelter services. In addition to the featured
film, The Salvation Army's national advertising campaign, which spotlights the
issue of poverty in Canada under the tagline - "Poverty shouldn't be a life
sentence" will be running during the month of May.
"This year's Red Shield Campaign is unique because it provides troubling
statistics and data about individuals living in extreme poverty," said
Commissioner Francis. "But there's still hope. The Salvation Army is confident
that people will hear our message and join our mission to support Canada's
poor and homeless."
The Red Shield Campaign is an annual event that has been a May tradition
for 90 years. Money raised during the campaign directly supports those living
in poverty throughout Canada through Salvation Army programs like shelter
care, substance abuse counseling and employment training services.
This year's goal is to raise $3 million by May 31st. Donors can
contribute to The Salvation Army by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY or by making an
online contribution at www.SalvationArmy.ca.
The report, "Poverty shouldn't be a life sentence" is available online:
About The Red Shield Campaign:
The Red Shield fundraising Campaign is an annual fundraising and public
awareness campaign held annually in May. The Salvation Army utilizes online,
phone, direct mail and door-to-door appeals to solicit donations from generous
Canadians. Giving to The Salvation Army offers an opportunity to invest in the
future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community. 88 cents of
every dollar raised by The Salvation Army goes directly to support those in
About The Salvation Army:
The Salvation Army is an international Christian organization that began
its work in Canada in 1882 and has grown to become the largest
non-governmental direct provider of social services in the country. The
Salvation Army gives hope and support to vulnerable people today and everyday
in 400 communities across Canada and 117 countries around the world. The
Salvation Army offers practical assistance for children and families, often
tending to the basic necessities of life, providing shelter for homeless
people and rehabilitation for people who have lost control of their lives to
an addiction. When you give to The Salvation Army, you are investing in the
future of marginalized and overlooked people in your community.
News releases, articles and updated information can be found at
For further information:
For further information: Andrew Burditt, Territorial Public Relations
Director, The Salvation Army, (416) 845-8231,