Salvation Army sending counselors to Okla. tornado disaster area - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Salvation Army sending counselors to Okla. tornado disaster area

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The Salvation Army is sending specially trained counselors to the tornado disaster area in Oklahoma. The Salvation Army is sending specially trained counselors to the tornado disaster area in Oklahoma.
SOUTHFIELD, Mich. (WJBK) -

Trained Salvation Army counselors are being mobilized to head down to the tornado disaster area in Oklahoma to not only help with the victims, but the first responders, as well.

These counselors are trained in Critical Incident Stress Management or CISM.

"People are more or less in shock and they don't know which way to turn, and it's just good to have somebody that you can talk to," said Emergency Disaster Services Director Chuck McDougall.

Thankfully for most of us, sitting in front of a television set is about as close to a disaster area as we will get. But these counselors live it, and they believe it's their duty to help the victims and first responders.

"It's got to be in you to want to help people. It's hard to explain. I mean, I'm getting goose bumps now just thinking about just the small things that I've been to here because people come up and they've lost everything and so often they have this positive outlook still. I mean, they're standing in what used to be a house is now just a flat area, and yet they're just so very thankful that they came out of it alive," McDougall said.

The teams of up to eight people will leave as early as Wednesday.

The Salvation Army needs your help, but instead of collecting supplies, they need your money.

"I've gotten a lot of phone calls already where people want to do drives to collect water and collect this and that and the other to send down there, but that really, I'm afraid, doesn't help us that much in a situation like this. It sort of creates a disaster in a disaster," McDougall said.

"The best thing they can do, they can donate their money. They can call 1-800-SAL-ARMY or you can simply text the word "STORM" to 80888 and that will be an automatic $10 donation."

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