Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

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Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

Please enter your name, email and zip code below to sign up!

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Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

Please enter your name, email and zip code below to sign up!

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please enter a valid email address
Please enter a valid zip code

Never Miss a Chance to Do the Most Good

Please enter your name, email and zip code below to sign up!

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A Century of Service

The Salvation Army has been serving Charlottesville since 1912. We deliver hope to our poorest, most vulnerable neighbors throughout Albemarle, Greene, Fluvanna, Nelson, and Buckingham counties. We embrace people regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

The need is growing, especially for housing solutions and homeless prevention in the greater Charlottesville area. Our vision is to meet current and future needs and to provide transformational opportunities necessary for our neighbors to thrive.

The Crossroad Between Crisis and Hope

Today, Charlottesville and The Salvation Army are at an intersection of a growing homeless population and limited space to provide a continuum of care that supports the journey to independence, including affordable, safe housing. For many, life is hard.


More than 23% of Charlottesville residents live below the poverty line. (U. S Census Bureau)


One out of six in Charlottesville do not have enough to eat. (University of Virginia)


In Albemarle County, 32% of households above the federal poverty level have less income than the basic cost of living for the county. (United Ways of Virginia 2021 study)


From 2021-2022 the homeless rate in Charlottesville increased by 32%. (Blue Ridge Area Coalition for the Homeless)


About 70% of the area's homeless are experiencing it for the first time. (Blue Ridge Area Coalition for the Homeless)


In October-November, 2023, The Salvation Army provided housing solutions to an average of 69 men and women but was forced to turn away an average of 54 homeless people due to space constraints. Likewise, in July The Salvation Army sheltered 63 individuals and had to turn away 45 homeless people. The demand for emergency shelter is at its lowest during the summer and mild weather months, but even greater during winter months.


An average of six calls per day for rental assistance and more than 300 calls per month for utility assistance are received by The Salvation Army from local residents desperately fighting to remain in their homes.

The Fear that Accompanies Homelessness

An August 29, 2023, article published by the (Charlottesville, VA) Daily Progress illustrated the dramatic rise of homelessness in our community. The article profiled a homeless man who, for many years, had owned his business but lost everything because of severe, progressive physical problems. He shared that for those without safe shelter, the streets can be very dangerous at night. He fears dying on the street. We must work together to address this crisis.

Meeting Human Needs Without Judging

“But God will never forget the needy; the hope of the afflicted will never perish.” (Psalms 9:18)

The Salvation Army meets people in need, in their time of need. Our mission compels our actions to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

Over the past two years, The Salvation Army provided a housing solution to an average of 613 unhoused men, women, and children annually. To prevent homelessness, an average of 2,047 received assistance with utility payments, food, clothing, and referrals through the emergency services program. Staff and volunteers served an average of 46,314 meals annually.

Our holistic approach focuses on transitions from instability – oftentimes even a life on the streets – to self-sufficiency marked by physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual stability.

The Salvation Army provides a continuum of care to our unhoused clients, both individuals as well as families. If we have space, no one is turned away. For those desiring to break through poverty, The Salvation Army provides a very effective program, Pathway of Hope. Our professional case workers work closely with the client to provide training and assistance in securing gainful employment. Each client is evaluated based on individual needs and receives essential life skills training, such as interview skills, budgeting, and personal finance. Upon employment, The Salvation Army will continue to provide shelter and meals so the client can save toward obtaining independent housing.

Renee’s Story

For 14 years, Renee (an actual Salvation Army client, whose name is changed to protect her identity) served our country in the US Air Force. Upon honorable discharge, Renee took a civilian job, had an apartment, and led what appeared to be a normal life.

For Renee, a storm was brewing. She developed a fear she couldn’t handle on her own, a mounting, severe paranoia of being around people. Her mental health deteriorated to the point where Renee couldn’t leave her apartment.

Consequently, she lost her job and her savings dwindled to a point where she couldn’t pay her rent and was evicted. This living storm rained down on Renee for a full year.

Renee was eventually diagnosed with bipolar disorder and was hospitalized for a month. She received medication and began to recover, but she had nowhere to go. She had no job, no money, not even legal identification.

The hospital contacted The Salvation Army, and there Renee found shelter from the storm.

The Salvation Army gave Renee structure and stability. They gave her clothes, food, and a bed. They helped her apply and receive legal identification, helped her with a resume, and helped her find employment. While still a resident, Renee is now saving money for her own place.

“The Center of Hope,” says Renee, “is more than just a bed, it’s a family. Everyone cares.”

I live here, I don’t feel homeless.

"It’s much more than just a homeless shelter, it’s hope for the hopeless, dignity for the homeless. I live here, I don’t feel homeless.” - Renee


The Current Center of Hope

is home to The Salvation Army of Charlottesville’s programs and services. In addition to housing solutions for men, women and families, the Center of Hope includes our community feeding program, social services, our church congregation and administrative offices. With portions dating back to the 1960’s, the current campus was not built for modern services, safety, and accessibility. The facility is worn out and lacks the space necessary to meet current and future needs, including community engagement and collaboration. Not all buildings are easy to navigate, particularly by less mobile individuals. The current campus consists of free-standing buildings and maneuverability can be very difficult for many, particularly during inclement weather.

“The Salvation Army has been discussing this issue and our response for decades. Now is the time for action. We were correct then and are correct now that our services will continue to be needed and expanded.” 
– Captain Mark Van Meter, Commanding Officer


The NEW Center of Hope

Will expand and modernize our programs to meet the homelessness crisis in Charlottesville and will increase access to greater opportunities and improved quality of life. It will enhance the lives of children in poverty and will strengthen The Salvation Army’s capacity to meet human needs. The new campus will be built on The Salvation Army’s existing site and will add to the downtown’s modernization and beautification.

The NEW Center of Hope will be a four-story, approximately 47,000 sq. ft. building, and will increase capacity by nearly 15,000 sq. ft.

  • The housing solution for single men and women will increase from 55 to 114 beds. The additional seven 2-bedroom transitional housing suites will allow families to stay together. The section will also include a children’s playroom.
  • A larger multi-purpose room will increase to 2,415 sq. ft. and will be used for youth and adult programming, emergency services, and The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Christmas gift campaign.
  • Life-skills training classrooms, an essential part of The Salvation Army’s program to transform lives, will double from four to eight rooms, a net increase of 44 seats.
  • To adequately feed our residents and provide hot evening meals to others in need, our dining hall will increase from 60 to 120 seats.
Program/Ministry Current Capacity New Capacity
Housing solution for single men and women. 55 beds + 10 extra beds for cold weather sheltering 114 total beds
Community Dining Room (breakfast and dinner daily, with lunch for residents) 80 seats 120 seats
Family Transitional Housing 28 beds: 4 one-bedroom units + 5 two-bedroom units 28 beds: 7 two-bedroom units

Hope For Tomorrow

“You cannot warm the hearts of people with God’s love if they have an empty stomach and cold feet.”
--William Booth, Founder, The Salvation Army

The cost for the new Center of Hope is estimated at $28 million. 

The Salvation Army is blessed to cast this ambitious
vision, knowing the spirit of generosity of the people
who call our community home. The need is urgent,
and we know that you and many other caring citizens
will be moved to make real and lasting change in the
lives of those who need it most.

Pledges and contributions, which can be fulfilled for up
to five years, are needed to reach this goal. In addition
to cash contributions, gifts of appreciated stock, bonds,
marketable real estate, and/or other appreciated and
appraisable possessions can be accepted. A variety of
planned and deferred gifts such as trusts, life insurance,
and bequests can be used to leave a legacy in support
of the endowment fund.

This is your opportunity to make a difference. Please
join us as we show those who need it most that

Hope Has A Place.


Operations Endowment  $2,200,000 
Contingency  $1,584,000 
Total $27,984,000
GOAL $28,000,000


“While women weep, as they do now, I’ll fight. While little children go hungry, as they do now, I’ll fight. While men go to prison, in and out, in and out, as they do now, I’ll fight. While there is a drunkard left, while there is a poor lost girl upon the streets, while there remains one dark soul without the light of God, I’ll fight. I’ll fight to the very end!”
--William Booth, Founder, The Salvation Army



Learn more

Captain Mark Van Meter
Charlottesville Corps Officer
tel: 434-295-4058
email[email protected]

Make a financial commitment 

Jim Battaglia
Charlottesville Corps Development Director
email[email protected]

Contribute appreciated assets and IRA funds

Kim Wentz
Senior Regional Resource Development Director, The Salvation Army Potomac Division
email[email protected]