Not Just Rags and Bottles

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Starrett Claims ARC Program Unknown

Appreciation – Commissioner Robert Watson, national commander, presents a plaque of appreciation to Major Daniel Starrett, Western ARC commander. Looking on are The Salvation Army’s national treasurer, Colonel J.B. Matthews, and the Executive Director of SAWSO, Harden White.

By Robert Docter – 

Completing its most productive year in overall success since the economic downturn, The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers of the Western Territory are still primarily unknown to the vast majority of soldiers and advisory organizations members, according to Major Dan Starrett, ARC Commander.

“The ARCs are a vital part of the Army’s total ministry.While we are perceived by many as a discarded goods pick-up service and thrift store program, in 1995 alone our 26 Centers worked to facilitate alcohol and drug rehabilitation for almost 10,000 men and women,” Starrett said. The Centers, located in the major metropolitan areas of the west, work to change the entire lifestyle of the beneficiaries through spiritual redemption and strong, competent rehabilitation programming. Chapel services provide testimonies that sound like the Army of old when men and women stand to share the change that sobriety has brought their lives through the saving grace of Jesus Christ. “Besides the Sunday chapel services, every week there are Bible classes and a weeknight chapel. The average weekly attendance in chapel is close to 300, and last year we enrolled 193 adherents and 26 soldiers,” Starrett noted.

With strong commitment to the values inherent in the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous, the ARCs have become one of the Army’s major evangelistic outreach efforts. “The Higher Power is the Lord Jesus Christ,” Starrett said, “and complete recovery is found in Him.”

Each year, the ARCs give tons of good, usable clothing away. “We clothe, house and feed more people on a regular basis than any other department of the Army,” Starrett commented. “We’re on the frontline of assistance to addicted homeless.”

The program was recently honored by SAWSO, The Salvation Army World Service Organization at National Headquarters for significant gifts to a number of countries experiencing major needs. Last year, the ARCs donated a total of $865,000 to the Army’s international world service effort. “This was an average of over $33,000 per Center,” Starrett said, “and all of it came from various projects and donations by beneficiaries – not from thrift store receipts.”

Each time disaster strikes and citizens of a community need immediate assistance, among the first on the scene in a helping relationship are men and women of the ARC. Their logistical support and manpower are essential to the Army’s response. “The ministry is as varied as the community we serve, and our programs are among the finest in the recovery field,” Starrett said as he extended an invitation to soldiers and friends of the Army to visit the program and get to know it better.

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