Boston Marathon Relief: Through Partnerships and Your Generous Support, We Continue to Help Those in Crisis

The Salvation Army Massachusetts Division's response to the Boston Marathon Bombing and Watertown Manhunt was an integral part in helping those impacted by this tragedy. Years later, our involvement has never been forgotten and continues to be a key example in training our EDS volunteers. Major Ivan Rock, former General Secretary of the Massachusetts Division said "The disaster services work done by The Salvation Army is an amazing partnership with first responders, our volunteer teams and the general public who consistently respond with generous hearts in the worst of times. No one can anticipate these kinds of circumstances impacting our city and region. We train and prepare so that we can be ready when the unthinkable occurs. We arrive on scene immediately, before a single dollar is raised for a specific incident and we stay as long as we are needed to help survivors and first responders."


Boston Marathon Bombings

runnersOn Monday April 15, 2013, The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) responded to support those in need and the first responders already on scene.

Canteens were positioned at various sites throughout the city, including the Unified Command Post, the Family Assistance Center, staffed by 12 Salvation Army officers and 23 Salvation Army staff/volunteers.

Eight Salvation Army officers trained in crisis counseling were deployed to all the hospitals receiving those injured throughout the Boston area offering pastoral care as needed. .One officer shared how he would simply sit with the families offering ‘a lot of hugs, a listening ear, and quiet prayers for all those impacted'.

Between Monday evening and Wednesday evening, 4,924 meals, snacks and drinks were supplied to the survivors, the families, and first responders.

Approximately 550 runners arrived at the Family Assistance Center over two days to receive their belongings checked with race officials prior to the marathon.

On Wednesday, April 17th, a grief counseling center was opened where families of injured runners or those needing additional help could come for care. The Salvation Army provided a canteen to feed those accessing the location, as well as officers to provide pastoral care to those asking.

Watertown Manhunt

AgenciesResponding to a call from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) at 4am, four canteens, three support vehicles, and 15 Emergency Disaster Service (EDS) staff, officers, and volunteers were working to serve the over 1,500 SWAT, FBI, Police, Fire, and other responders to this crisis.

From 5:30am to midnight our five EDS teams served over 14,000 meals, snacks, and drinks.

Memorial Service for MIT Officer Sean Collier

In support of this state-wide memorial service, TSA has been asked to provide canteens in multiple staging areas for the thousands of officers attending the service on Wednesday April 24th. EDS teams provided food, water, coffee, and emotional and spiritual care in the Boston, Wilmington, and Springfield, MA areas.

Summary of Services April 15-24

Our EDS teams provided over 18,924 meals, snacks, and drinks throughout the disaster, and our volunteers offered a total of 501 hours through this event. We are extremely grateful for all those who helped respond in this time of crisis, and provided their compassion and service to those in need.

Throughout the response, The Salvation Army collaborated with the Office of Emergency Management, the Fire Department, the Police Department, Sparks, the Red Cross, the Department of Child, Youth, and Families (DCYF), Riverside Trauma, Boston Public Health Commission, and Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA).

We will continue to pray for those so dramatically impacted by this tragedy, offering our support and resources to help in anyway we are able towards their healing and recovery.

How to Help

The best way to be of assistance to our efforts following the tragic events is to make a financial contribution. If you would like to be trained so that you can volunteer for future needs, please visit our Volunteer page or our Training Schedule.