13 November 2015

PUBLIC awareness of The Salvation Army's ministry in Russia was given a boost through a report on Arctic TV, a television channel based in Murmansk. The news item highlighted the work of SPAtex, a used clothing operation operated by the Russia Command along similar lines to – and in consultation with – the well-established Fretex rehabilitation and recycling programme run by The Salvation Army in Norway.

SPAtex brings in funding for Salvation Army programmes while also – through relationships with government labour departments – providing employment and rehabilitation opportunities, particularly for disabled people. The first two SPAtex facilities have been set up in Murmansk and St Petersburg but there is a vision to expand across Russia.

The Arctic TV report tells viewers that The Salvation Army is a Christian organisation actively involved in the life of the community. It explains that a building to process clothing through SPAtex has been purchased in Murmansk and encourages viewers to give generously through the collection containers.

Two containers in the grounds of the Radisson Park Inn Hotel have already been filled with quality clothing, and a further eight containers are ready to be distributed throughout the city. 

Arctic TV reports that The Salvation Army is working with homeless people, underprivileged families with children, and people with disabilities. Captain Andrei Slashev (corps officer, Murmansk) and Zhana Makarova (a representative from the Labour Office in Murmansk) were both interviewed, and were able to explain how SPAtex works. Zhana will be working very closely with The Salvation Army to place people in the rehabilitation programme that is an integral part of the SPAtex set-up. 

Major Glenn Price (General Secretary, Russia Command) adds: 'We extend our thanks once again to International Headquarters and especially to our friends in Norway who have helped this project come into reality. We are very excited about the possibilities this can bring.'

Feature by IHQ Communications
International Headquarters

Tags: Europe