Altus Salvation Army granted extension, still needs $9,000

Altus_UPDATE_Captain Ron Mott with the Altus Salvation Army says they brought in $5,100 on Monday toward the $16,000 goal they needed to complete by today.  He says his superiors have granted a one-week extension to raise the remaining $9,000.  Mott says donations can be mailed to the Salvation Army in Altus at P.O. Box 484, Altus, OK, 73521, or dropped off at their location at 521 West Broadway.  He hopes to reach the goal by April 7.

The Altus Salvation Army has a little over two weeks to earn $25,000 or it will have to close its doors - possibly for good.  Last year they had outgrown their current facility, with the Boys and Girls Club and soup kitchen.  But, the real problem is the building itself - it's over 80-years-old and falling apart, making it unsafe.

Now, the regional office says the agency must move or close the doors  They have raised $275,000 since 2006 with the intention of moving into the Family Worship Center - a recently remodeled church with plenty of room, at a more central location.  But, since the deadline given by the Salvation Army's central office is at the end of this month, they are cutting it close.

The Altus Salvation Army says it will be a year of new beginnings if they can meet their $25,000 goal.  "It's a good feeling to know that over the year that we've been doing this, that it's all coming together, and we're just so close...,"  says Captain Ron Mott.  The old building is simply too small and rundown for the type of work the organization does.  Mott says the new building will be much better.  "It's going to seem like a mansion to us compared to what we have,"  he says.

However, they only have a short time to raise the funds, and Mott says he's not considering closing the doors of the facility.  "At this point, we're not even looking at those options - the option that we have right now is to get in this new facility and that's where our focus is," he says.

The new facility comes complete with office equipment, computers, tables and chairs, and TVs with surround sound.  Family Worship Center Pastor Jan Oden knocked $25,000 off of the original price for the Altus Salvation Army because he says he believes in what they do.  "The Salvation Army's been here a long time - we need them to stay here," he says.  "Project Hope is just what it is - it's hope - for others, and for us to help them, and we do appreciate everything people are doing for us."

Mott is confident they will reach the goal by the end of March.  He says they could be in the new building as soon as May 15, if and when they reach the $300,000 mark.  They will share the building with the church until their new building is finished.  If you would like to donate to this organization, contact the Altus Salvation Army at 580-482-8577.