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Salvation Army: A place for all

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LAWTON, Okla_Saturday kicked off the Salvations Army's first ever block party. The cooler weather made for a slow start, but as the sun came out, so did the community.

Corps members were hoping to raise money for future events, but most of all they wanted to open their arms and doors to the community.

Like music, the Salvation Army discriminates against no one, so it's only fitting that the first thing that greeted you at the block party was a rhythm band. The band was made up of men who have all benefited in much different ways from the Salvation Army.

Mason Wells is who he is today because of the Salvation Army. He was cared for by them as a child, and now he gives back.

"There's something the Salvation Army always offers. No matter what age you are, " said Wells.

Plucking away on the bass, Macdonald Chaava shared his story about how the Salvation Army helped him transition from Africa to the United States. He's living proof that their reach is world wide.

"We can be anywhere in the world, but when there's a Salvation Army Corps or Salvation Army facility you are pretty much home, " Chaava explained.

But that's not enough for people like event organizer Kahealani Dingle. She knows there are still so many out there who don't know the greatness of what they do.

"We want everybody here. The Salvation Army is here for you as a whole. Whether or not you're volunteering or you're just coming cause you just want somewhere to be, " said Dingle.

Kahealani, Macdonald and Mason. They are all very different people, but have all found a place they belong in the Salvation Army, and they want nothing more than to spread the love.

"It makes me feel like home. It makes me feel welcome. And when I come in I smile, and I'm excited to see my friends that are here and what I all my family, " said Dingle.

Donations from the block party will go towards future community events.

One such event will be affordable guitar lessons. For $20 a class participants can borrow a guitar and learn to play music. If you're interested in joining call the Salvation Army at 580-355-1802.

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