Tony and Lauren Dungy are offering help to Hillsborough County in Tampa, Florida as part of the Salvation Army’s campaign to raise funds for a new state-of-the-art emergency shelter.
According to ABC Action News, the non-profit Christian organization announced that the Dungy’s will serve as honorary chairs for the fundraising campaign. The Salvation Army hopes to raise $6.5 million through the campaign in order to build a 39,000 square-foot facility that will offer social services and residence to those who need it.
“We are in it together as a community and when one part of the community is hurting, we all should hurt and so there are things that we can do,” Tony, an outspoken Christian and NFL hall of fame coach, said. “Maybe I can just do a little, but if I team up with other people together, I can do a lot and that’s, I think, our message. We really want people to know, no matter how small you think your gift is, it can be part of something big.”
Lauren then stepped in to emphasize the importance of this project “especially during this time with COVID.”
“There’s a need to help others to bless others that are experiencing challenges,” she added.
Tony echoed Lauren’s sentiments saying, “God can use all of us, especially in times like this.”
Tampa area commander for the Salvation Army, Captain Andy Miller, shared with ABC Action News his excitement for the new building.
“We’re looking forward to being able to serve people better to accomplish our mission in a more comprehensive way. We’re doing really well with what we have. I say we’re making some great lemonade out of some tough lemons.”
According to Miller, amid the pandemic, services by the non-profit have gone up to 300 percent as many people have suffered job losses.
The Dungy’s offered some uplifting words of encouragement for those in need.
“The message is yes, we’re out here, there are people in our community who do care and please don’t give up,” said Tony.
“We really want to spread that message of love that we care for people regardless of their situation or the choices that they’ve made. We want to walk alongside you, we support you, we love you and we want to help you,” Lauren added.
A wall-breaking ceremony for the new facility will take place on August 14. The estimated completion date for the project will be on June 20, 2021.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Andy Lyons/Staff
Video courtesy: ABN Action News
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.