Lake Charles and Calcasieu parish Salvation Army assistance programs.

Most of the programs offered by the Lake Charles Salvation Army resolve around helping meet basic needs and getting people back on track with self-sufficiency. Financial support for paying energy bills, rent, or other expenses is rare.

For residents that are facing imminent eviction or that are currently homeless, a Transitional Shelter Program is available. The Salvation Army Center of Hope Transitional Shelter Program was created in an effort to help people overcome problems or challenges that have damaged their lives, that caused the homelessness or challenge that the individual is facing.

Not only will it provide a place for people to stay for a very short period of time, but case managers and staff will also offer a number of services to clients. This can include, but is not limited to, education, miscellaneous supportive services, life skills, job programs, personal accountability training and more. The goal is to help people by encouraging a life-transforming relationship. Over time it is critical for people to get back on track, so the transitional housing program will work with clients on this.

Usually clients will be able to participate in the housing program for up to 90 days. Once accepted into the program, a participant will work with their Salvation Army case manager to develop personal goals and objectives. This may include some of the following.

  • Assistance with securing proper identification.
  • Support for staying clean from harmful substances.
  • Finding steady employment in the Lake Charles region.
  • Maintaining a personal budget and also establishing a savings account.
  • Obtaining reliable transportation.
  • Assistance with finding and obtaining permanent housing and paying the rent on it.
  • Enroll into Salvation Army sponsored Adult Basic Education or GED classes.
  • Attend various life skill classes.
  • Finding employment with enough income to pay the bills.




The Salvation Army runs thrift stores in Calcasieu Parish Louisiana. For many local residents, the non-profit is the place where people can donate gently used household items and clothing. The Salvation Army can serve as a great place to recycle used goods that can be obtained by someone in need. However many individuals also realize that the Salvation Army Family Thrift Store provides support through the sale of items to the general public.

There are a few Thrift Stores in the parish. They are located in Moss Bluff, downtown Lake Charles, and also Westlake Louisiana. These stores serve as places where people can buy merchandise at low cost, reasonable prices. Some of what can be purchased includes clothing, gently used furniture, and even small kitchen appliances.

If you or your family is going hungry, then the soup kitchens and food pantries in Lake Charles offer free food, groceries, meals, and more. All of this is done in an effort to help the hungry and working poor. Anyone from the community who needs a meal can come and get help. Other support provided can include free holiday meals or baskets for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Many people from the community need occasional help with paying utilities, rent, or other bills in a crisis. The Salvation Army may rarely have some funds to help, but more than likely referrals or information is offered. For example, get help in apply for federal programs like LIHEAP or public aid in Louisiana such as SNAP food stamps. Other non-profits in the region may be able to help in a time of crisis.

Seniors and the elderly in the community may get help as well. The Salvation Army will focus on older residents in Calcasieu parish. Those who qualify may receive free meals, activities at senior centers, and the homebound may have goods brought to them. Some recreational activities may be organized too by the non-profit.

The two main centers are 3004 Gerstner Memorial Dr (phone (337) 474-2554) as well as 3020 Legion St. in
Lake Charles Louisiana. Call (337) 721-8068.




By Jon McNamara

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