HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - A decrease in donations coupled with tough economic times has forced the Salvation Army of Hancock County to close down.
"They've served a number of needs in the community. Our families still rebuilding their lives certainly need the help of the Salvation Army. We hate to see them go," Waveland Mayor Tommy Longo said.
Despite the closing, Major Alan Hill of the Salvation Army said the organization is still committed to helping the county as much as funds will allow.
"The services are not really being cut; they're just going to be handled from a different place," Hill said.
The Hancock County location will move its operations to Gulfport at the end of August. However, with money drying up, Hill said money for long-term recovery projects will run out in September. The fund helped pay for repairs to hurricane-damaged homes and helped people buy insurance so they could buy their FEMA trailers.
"We've reached a point in time where we have to phase out disaster services and move on with normal Salvation Army operations," Hill said.
The focus will shift to day-to-day needs like clothing, food and, in some cases, help with rent and utilities.
The caseworker who worked at the location said there is some concern, however, with clients being able to get to the Gulfport location. The caseworker was the only worker in the office and was laid-off when it closed.
In the meantime, the organization continues to work with other agencies to figure out the best way to move forward and still provide the county with as much help as it can.
Again, the location will stay open until the end of August, but will not accept new clients. If you'd like more information, please call (228) 324-4632.