Seven canteens are in Denton, North Carolina, awaiting dispatch to areas along the eastern seaboard. They're equipped with kitchens to provide hot food and supplies on the spot.
The trucks were prepared at the Salvation Army warehouse in Jackson. "We have cleanup buckets, food, hydration materials and tools we need to get through disasters, this is where the mobile kitchens come in to be supplied," says Salvation Army Captain Ken Chapman.
The Alabama/Mississippi/Louisiana branch of the Salvation Army is still helping out with long-term tornado recovery in Mississippi, but it has the resources and manpower to respond to Hurricane Irene as well. The Salvation Army considers Irene a national disaster because it covers two territories, the south and the east.
"They had been told at the beginning of the week to be on standby, to be ready to respond within 24 hours. And they were," says Divisional Emergency Disaster Services Director Bill Feist.
Essentials like bottled water, dry food, and care kits are all ready to go, if Irene ends up wreaking widespread havoc.
The Salvation Army says extra help is always welcome. "If anyone wants to volunteer for disaster, they can contact us, we'll train them, they can be on a call list when these things happen," Captain Chapman says.
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