Our History

The Salvation Army was founded by William Booth, a Methodist minister, in London in 1865. Booth worked with the very poor in the East End of London, providing "soup, soapbb and salvation."

The Salvation Army came to the United States in 1879 through the work of a teenage girl in Philadelphia and began full force in New York in 1880. Within five years, The Salvation Army was operating in Canada, India, Switzerland, Sweden, Sri Lanka, South Africa, New Zealand, and Pakistan.

The Salvation Army currently provides services to people in every county in the United States and in 121 countries around the world.

During World War I, Salvation Army "Doughnut Girls" served coffee and doughnuts to soldiers battling on the front lines.

The Salvation Army was instrumental in forming the USO in 1941 in response to a request from President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Roosevelt determined it would be best if private organizations handled the on-leave recreation needs of the rapidly growing U.S. armed forces. Roosevelt's call to action led The Salvation Army and five other civilian agencies to coordinate their civilian war efforts and resources to form a new organization - the USO (United Service Organizations).

The Salvation Army has been in Fort Lauderdale since 1926 and has grown from providing basic assistance to being one of the largest providers of services to homeless people in Broward County.



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