Food and Family from The Salvation Army, MA on Vimeo.

Jennifer Pinn needed food for her family. When she went to the Quincy Salvation Army food pantry, she saw a familiar face and received more than what she came for. The youth worker invited Jen to bring her son to youth programs.

“Jonathan wouldn’t stay anywhere without me because of a trauma that he had experienced.” Jen explains, “There were no after school programs he would go to.”

When she heard that she could stay with Jonathan to make sure he was ok, she decided to give it a try.

“Since then,” Jen says, “I feel like I belong somewhere. I never felt like I had a purpose. God knew what needed to change in my life and exactly the people who could do it for me.”

Captain Nicole Ross says, “Jen and her family needed food, but she also needed a community.”

Ross describes how they helped with emergency financial assistance and budgeting to help the family move beyond simple survival.

When her husband, Jim, had a stroke and was out of work from his job as a security supervisor, The Salvation Army was there to help with hospital visits and transportation.

Since they fi rst came fi ve years ago, life continues to improve for the Pinns. Through a Salvation Army connection, Jen enrolled in a local college program to become a home health aide. She scored the highest in her class.

“Ever since I met Jen,” Ross says, “she told how she wanted to work. Now she has a job.”

Even though she’s working, Jen still makes time to volunteer. Every Wednesday, she and Jim cook dinner for the youth programs where Jonathan is an active member.

Ross describes the heart of service Jen and Jim have. “You can tell they help because of the help they’ve received. That is such a powerful motivation for any volunteer.”