The Salvation Army’s dedication to providing social services began with its founder, William Booth. Reaching out to those living in the slums of East London in 1865, he saw the need to do more for those who were just struggling to survive and his ‘soup, soap, and salvation’ idea took hold. He understood the need for everyone to have the basic necessities of life, and today his philosophy continues. The Salvation Army works in 128 countries offering practical services to help those in need, from job training and hot meals, to addictions recovery programs and emergency shelter.

food on table

Community Services

Ministry units in our Division offer programs and services tailored to their area, city, or community to best meet the needs of vulnerable or marginalized people. This can include food banks, school nutrition programs, life-skills classes such as ESL or anger management, Christmas assistance, after-school programs, and more. To see what your local Salvation Army offers, please visit our Locations page.


Residential Services

Shelters, Transitional Housing, Supportive Residences, Senior’s Care Homes, Hospice Care

One night, as William Booth, Founder of The Salvation Army, travelled through the streets of London, England, he was surprised to see homeless men huddled under a bridge. In the morning he instructed his son, Bramwell, to “Do something.” And, with that, The Salvation Army’s work in shelters for people experiencing homelessness began.

In Canada, The Salvation Army opened rescue homes and shelters in 1886. In Alberta and the Northern Territories, we operate various types of housing, such as emergency shelters, bridge and supportive housing, senior’s care, and hospice care. The Salvation Army also provides additional extreme weather response beds during the winter months.

person giving out food

Emergency Disaster Services

Since its inception in December of 1917, The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) has grown into an international network involving thousands of trained personnel worldwide, including many volunteers. EDS personnel respond to incidents of various sizes and scopes by providing support that meets the immediate and long-term, physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of disaster survivors and responders.

Since each disaster is unique and devastating in the way it impacts the lives of individuals and communities, The Salvation Army’s emergency & disaster response is community based, varying from place to place based upon the community’s situation and the magnitude of the incident.

man in thinking

Addictions Recovery

The Salvation Army offers Addictions Recovery programs for those whose primary addiction is drugs or alcohol. The program is based on the 12-Step model that uses module based learning, group counselling, and individual counselling. The Salvation Army also has a spiritual component to the program, as well as community involvement and life skills training.

Often treatment is followed by after-care or second stage housing options to enhance the chances for long-term recovery. Currently, addictions treatment is offered by the Centre of Hope in Calgary (403-410-1151) to men over 18, and adult after-care by the Centre of Hope in Edmonton (780-429-4274).

thrift store logo

Thrift Stores

By shopping and donating at Salvation Army Thrift Stores, you help support our programs, services, and emergency relief efforts. Donations also keep usable items out of our landfills, and help families in need with basic necessities.

The Salvation Army in Canada owns and operates all Salvation Army Thrift Stores and has done so for more than 100 years. In urban communities across Canada, the majority of Thrift Stores are overseen by The Salvation Army National Recycling Operations (NRO). Those not operated by NRO are overseen by Salvation Army ministries such as the local church/corps or Community & Family Services unit.

Visit our Locations page for corps-run Thrift Stores. Visit or call 1-800-757-4483 for information on NRO-run stores.

family putting canoe on lake

Summer Camp

If you’re looking for great summer fun, Pine Lake Camp is the adventure you need! Conveniently located 30 minutes southeast of Red Deer, Alberta, our camp offers an abundance of activities ranging from canoeing, wall climbing, swimming, campfires, archery, photography, and more… making this the ultimate summer adventure!

We offer holiday camps for kids 7-12 years, Teen Camp, Moms and Tots camp, and Gospel Arts camp. Visit our site today for more information or to register for a camp. Subsidies may be available for some camps, please inquire.

Our camp also features a Conference and Retreat Centre and RV Park, great for your personal getaway or corporate retreat!

people with christmas gifts

Christmas Assistance

Please remember to register early for Christmas assistance, including toy hampers, food hampers, Adopt-a-Family programs, Angel Tree programs, and other assistance programs. Watch for our Christmas program listing in the fall.

fill the kettle and make a difference in someone's life

Christmas Kettle Campaign

The Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign is a fundraising effort that occurs each year during the Christmas season. Kettles can be found at many locations across our Division and are an opportunity for the public to donate funds to support the year-round work of The Salvation Army. Our Kettles accept debit, credit card, cash, and cheque donations. Online donations can be made at

Kettle funds raised stay local are used to support year-round programs through The Salvation Army’s Community & Family Service (CFS) centres, such as food banks, job skills training, counselling, shelters, transitional housing, life skills training, and more. Each CFS offers programs and services tailored to the needs of their community, helping vulnerable people struggling to get by.

Volunteers will be needed to help run the campaigns and ring the bells at the kettles – it’s a great way to give back and teach your family about the gift of volunteerism.

Sign-up to volunteer today: Edmonton – or call 780-412-2627. Calgary – or 403-410-1113.
All other cities and towns, please email us at and include your city.