The Salvation Army is one of the largest national providers of welfare services. Operating for over 130 years in Australia, The Salvation Army has a significant history of working with and advocating for the rights and needs of disadvantaged people in our community. Consistent with our values of human dignity, justice, hope, compassion and community, The Salvation Army is committed to the promotion of social justice and protection of the rights of disadvantaged and vulnerable people. The Salvation Army Australia, with an annual operating budget of approximately $600 million, provides over 1,000 social programs and activities through a network of social support services, community centres and churches across the country.
In the past 12 months, The Salvation Army Australia provided over one million occasions of service to people in need. This included more than 230,000 people provided with emergency relief, over 100,000 meals, over 3,000 women supported through family and domestic violence services, and over 1,000 crisis and 6,000 non-crisis accommodation beds every night of the year.
The Salvation Army provides emergency relief services through 237 sites nationally. The Salvation Army emergency relief services are provided through ‘Doorways’, a philosophical context that encompasses an integrated, holistic and capacity building approach that is closely aligned to current government policy trends promoting a ‘hand up, not a hand out!’ The Doorways philosophy seeks to address the underlying factors leading to poverty, for people experiencing long term and entrenched deprivation and disengagement and the growing number of people experiencing situational poverty.
In 2009, 2010 and 2011, The Salvation Army Australia Southern Territory surveyed people accessing emergency relief through its Community Support Services and Doorways centres to ascertain the impact of the Global Financial Crisis. These surveys provided a snapshot of the impact of the general downturn in the national economic situation, providing evidence of significant personal and economic challenges and increased fi nancial volatility in the community arising from housing and other cost of living pressures.
These surveys have become the foundation underpinning the national Economic and Social Impact Survey (ESIS) conducted in 2012, and for the current ESIS 2013 report, 'It’s not asking too much…'.