Kelly Spurway hands out bag lunches on Main Street in Smithers out of the Salvation Army’s mobile community service unit. (Thom Barker photo)

Salvation Army reopens its doors

Food bank and thrift store are now open, but differently than before the pandemic

The Salvation Army at the end of Main Street in Smithers has reopened its doors as part of the “BC Restart Plan.”

However, Community ministry director for The Salvation Army in the Bulkley Valley Adam Marshall said it won’t be business as usual.

“We are allowing people to come back into our facility but it still won’t be come in, sit down, enjoy your meal scenario because of COVID we still need to take precautions,” he said. “But we will be serving lunches out of our serving window inside our building. People will come to the window, two at a time in the building and they will receive a bagged lunch within the same time frame 11-12:30, 1.”

The food bank, soup kitchen and Thrift Store were closed two months ago to help stop the spread of the virus, but paper bag lunches were made available for pick-up outside the facility and food hampers were delivered while the building was closed to the public.

“I think a lot of people are excited to see things going back to sort of, what they kind of, used to be and to find out what the new norm will be,” added Marshall. “This is an opportunity to give our program truck a bit of a break and use our certified kitchen and staff.”

THE LATEST: Top doctor urges caution as B.C. records 19 new COVID-19 cases.

The Thrift Store is also open again. There will only be four customers allowed in the store at one time. Store hours are now 11-3:30 on Tuesday – Saturday.

Donations can only be dropped off by appointment.

“We are a very small thrift store,” explained Marshall. “It is a matter of us being wise about accepting donations.”

The store has been reorganized and rearranged with a new look.

“It is a huge support for our programs,” he said. “The purchases customers make go to keeping the lights on in the store and any proceeds over that go to programs and what we can offer. Our daily goal is around $300 to $400. We are always happy to hit that goal if we are lucky.”

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