The Salvation Army was founded in 1865 in East London, England as a street ministry. The founder, William Booth quickly realized that London’s down and outs where not willing to listen to a gospel message if they were hungry and tired. Booth’s realization led to the birth of social welfare programs that helped meet with immediate needs and such programs are now more vibrant than ever in over 125 countries around the world.
A few short years later the first Salvation Army pioneers settled in Solano County now over 100 years ago and the tradition of service has ensued ever since. Today The Salvation Army operates three service centers strategically located throughout the county providing programs and services that meet the needs of Solano County’s most desperate citizens and is posed to launch a ground breaking new Mobile Assistance program.
In additional to its traditional programs in May 2012 The Salvation Army opened a new state-of-the-art Community and Recreation Center in Suisun City that serves the entire region and focusing on enriching the lives of individuals and families in body, mind and soul.
The Kroc Center, as it has become known, is the result of a planned gift given by Joan Kroc, wife of Ray Kroc, the pioneer of the fast food industry through the worldwide network of McDonalds Restaurants. Joan Kroc had a vision for a place where families could be inspired to reach greater things in their lives, learning new skills in a nurturing and loving environment. Her gift to The Salvation Army enabled the organization to develop 27 like facilities across the country and seed money to help ensure they remained state-of-the-art and cutting edge in every way.
The Kroc Center features the most extensive program schedule of any fitness or community facility in the region offering everything from swim lessons to music lessons, after school programming to senior health fairs, Basketball clinics to Crochet clubs and Worship to weight lifting. With quality equipment and world class facilities Joan Kroc’s gift to The Salvation Army has redefined the term Community Center in Solano County.
Each year The Salvation Army provides vital services to thousands of local families in Solano County and with a solid foundation in the community and a traditional of long standing service, it would be fair to say The Salvation Army is here to stay!