Salvation Army

Salvation Army Logo

Salvation Army

The Salvation Army aids in addiction recovery, emergency response, and social work

Claim this Profile

BestCompany.com is trying to work directly with this company to verify the accuracy of the information on this page. Thank you for your patience as we make sure we’re getting it right.

Are you a representative

of this company?

Claim this Profile

The Salvation Army was founded in London in 1865 by a former Methodist preacher and his wife. International headquarters for The Salvation Army are in London, but the organization has a presence in 127 countries worldwide. The Salvation Army’s United States headquarters are in Alexandria, Virginia.

Because the organization has status as a Christian church in addition to being a charitable organization, full financial disclosure and filing of an IRS Form 990 is not required. There have been several allegations of The Salvation Army mismanaging funds and even making a profit on donated physical items.

 

Goodwill Logo Goodwill ›

8.6

Overall
Score

starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Food for the Poor Logo Food for the Poor ›

8.4

Overall
Score

starstarstarstar_halfstar_border
Compassion International Logo Compassion International ›

8.4

Overall
Score

starstarstar_halfstar_borderstar_border
Salvation Army Logo Salvation Army ›

8.2

Overall
Score

starstarstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

The Good

  • Program percentage
  • Donor communication
  • Awards

Program Percentage

On average, The Salvation Army spends 82 percent of its income on program delivery. Some of the programs that the organization maintains include:

Support for Adults

  • Adult rehabilitation
  • Veteran affairs
  • Prison ministries
  • Elder services
  • Combating human trafficking
  • Missing Persons

Support for Children and Families

  • Hunger relief
  • Housing and homeless services
  • Youth camps and recreations
  • Christmas assistance
  • Kroc centers

International Aid and Disaster Relief

  • Sponsorship
  • World service

Donor Communication

The Salvation Army has a robust presence on social media and provides regular updates of its programs. The organization maintains social media accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

Awards

In May 2016, The Salvation Army was recognized with the STEM Education Leadership Award for its support of STEM programs. This award was presented by Nasdaq and EverFi.

The Bad

  • Total income
  • Administrative expenses
  • Fundraising expenses
  • Accessible financial information
  • Negative press

Total Income

Because The Salvation Army is registered as a religious organization, there is no federal requirement for the organization to file Form 990s, which is one way that charitable organizations illustrate their transparency. However, The Salvation Army did report income of $4,111,013 for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014. The organization does not offer much financial information about other years on its website.

Administrative Expenses

The Salvation Army has not disclosed the salaries of its top executives. On its breakdown of expenses for the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2014, $407,934 or 12 percent of The Salvation Army's expenses were paid under the "Management and General" category. There is no explanation from The Salvation Army about the specifics of this category.

Fundraising Expenses

In 2014, The Salvation Army reported that it spent $217,887 or 6 percent of its expense budget on fundraising.

Accessible Financial Information

Finding financial information on The Salvation Army's website is straightforward; however, there is an overall lack of financial information available. This lack of transparency may raise questions for some.

Negative Press

The Salvation Army was named as one of the "Top Greediest Charities" by Business Pundit in May 2011. The publication accused The Salvation Army of owning high-end real estate (worth at least $900,000) for its executives. Additional accusations include selling properties gifted to the organization for profit and suing Greenpeace over a confusing clause in a will in an effort to rob Greenpeace of an inherited gift.  The Salvation Army has also been criticized through the years for its supposed mistreatment of the LGBTQ community.

The Bottom Line

The Salvation Army is a nonprofit organization with history dating back to 1865. The organization frequently communicates with its donors and has a respectable program delivery percentage. However, The Salvation Army is not very transparent about its financial information and has received some negative press in the past.

Disclaimer

As part of our service, we attempt to partner with all the companies that we review, and may get compensated when you click or call them from our site; however, regardless of any current, past, or future financial arrangements, companies listed on Best Company cannot buy their position, nor do we manipulate or inflate a company's ranking for financial gain. A company’s ranking is based on and calculated by an objective set of ranking criteria, as well as user reviews. For more information on how we rank companies, click here.

All user reviews posted on Best Company are subject to screening and approval. We reserve the right to approve or deny any review posted to this site in accordance with our Review Guidelines. Best Company never suppresses user reviews—unless they are being investigated for authenticity, or if they violate our review guidelines. We encourage anyone who suspects a user review to be fraudulent or intentionally inaccurate to please notify us here.


User Reviews

2

starstarstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
12 Reviews

Your trust is our top priority, so we check all reviews for accuracy and relevance. Additionally, we do not allow companies to alter or remove reviews. Learn more

Sort by:
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
DP
March 19th, 2019 Springfield, IL

Terrible experience trying to donate to them. I was moving and decided to give them my furniture. They agreed to take what I had over the phone, but when Salvation Army employees showed up where I lived, they refused to take any item that looked even slightly used, even if they had already agreed to take it. I had to scramble to find a different charity to take the pieces they wouldn't take . If the Salvation Army doesn't think they can immediately turn around and sell an item on the show room floor, they won't take it. I learned the hard way that I should have used a different group that is true to their word about what they would take and is willing to put in the effort to rehab furniture that has some wear.

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Cindy
February 14th, 2019 Newcastle, NE DETAILS
Value for your money
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

I have tried to get help from salvation army twice, the first time I tried I had lost everything thing I owned in a fire. I had no blankets, no food, no furniture and no money. I am permanently disabled living on below poverty income. The receptionist is abusively RUDE heartless and uncaring, she called her supervisor who was cruel heartless and insulting. I use to donate to the salvation army and now, I will never contact them again, I will never recommend them for anything to anyone. I would like them to go to the have a heart school, then send them to charm s hook, then everyone that works there should be forced to live in my shoes for years. This would teach them love, patience and kindness. They claim to be a church. So they must worship a god. God and Jesus say we all must love our fellow man, must treat our fellow man as we want to be treated. They do not follow these teachings. Who's teachings do they follow???!!

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Lisa
December 3rd, 2018

Absoultely awful charity i wont even class them that. They was beyond awful to me when i was down on my luck back in 2010 they didnt help me when i was homeless and hungary they said i needed to be a drug addict and alcoholic to get the help i need. They said because im not from south east of England they didnt want me there. Im from north east but lived with a friend from Folkestone for very short period of time. I went to one of the salvation army places they mocked my accent and treat me like an outcast they couldnt wait for me to get out their door. The way they dealt with me was awful i felt belittled and was publicly huminated in front of others. I was called blonde bimbo by member of staff and because i came from north east she was laughing at my accent.

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Mary Lou Petta
October 25th, 2018 Waterbury, CT DETAILS
Value for your money
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

The people answering the phone to make appointments for donations should tell us that the driver takes pictures of the donations and waits to hear from the manager if they want it. I would never donate like this.

Helpful?
starstarstarstarstar
Thomas Hullinger
August 27th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstarstar
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstarstar
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar
Company trustworthiness
starstarstarstarstar

I admire the people of the Salvation Army for their service and dedication to helping people in need.

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Jon Roberts
July 13th, 2018 DETAILS
Value for your money
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

Suffered carbon monoxide poisoning at one of their rented properties which effected my whole family. Salvation Army completely disinterested and only concerned with evicting us onto the street as fast as possible to re home one of their officers which can hardly be classed as charitable. This is in direct contradiction of all their adverts about how they look after people so please donate. On the whole the worst Landlord it has been my misfortune to have. I used to hold the Salvation Army with some esteem and have made donations in the past unfortunately the public image is just a front and all they really care about is themselves. Not Christian in any way.

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Alicia Holman
June 22nd, 2018 Gilbert, AZ

I don't like the fact that they over exaggerate how much they do when an emergency happens. They need to be more transparent with their funds and where they are going to help. There are smaller charities that do more work with less.

Helpful?
starstarstarstarstar
Tom
June 11th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstarstar
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstarstar
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar
Company trustworthiness
starstarstarstarstar

The Salvation Army are angels to us here on earth. I love the Christmas time giving and hearing the bells. I also love to give all year round.

Helpful?
starstarstarstarstar
jeanette rabius
March 21st, 2018 Tucson, AZ DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstarstar
Quality of product or service
starstarstarstarstar
Customer service
starstarstarstarstar
Company trustworthiness
starstarstarstarstar

they are beyond ANY other group for the employees work and the way they take care of funds and helping people. BUT+ your review of them said the "volunteers" that work the red kettles at christmas time ARE paid workers. please do not misinform those who read and "trust" your posting.

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Olesya Plazyo
March 21st, 2018 Troy, MI DETAILS
Value for your money
starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Quality of product or service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Customer service
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Company trustworthiness
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border

I just had the worst experience trying to make a donation to Salvation Army. They were going to come out pick up 2 mattresses for me for which I requested 2 receipts. They came but brought just 1 receipt. Because the mattresses were from 2 different companies, I needed 2 separate receipts. I called their customer service, thinking that this should be an easy fix. Instead I got the rudest person talking aggressively and impolitely to me over the phone. When I asked to speak to her supervisor, he also had an attitude. They do not care if the mattresses get donated or not. I couldn't believe it. Sad....

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
Shayla D Williams
March 8th, 2018 Manor, TX

Scheduled a pick up for a donation and the salvation army guys told me they were not going to take it because underneath the bottom of the couch had a tear and one of the cushions had Been stitched.... other than that furniture in great condition.... I have never been so confused that you have to have perfect furniture to donate it. The guys told us they were looking to make a big profit and my furniture did not cut it.....is the salvation army helping less fortunate ppl. Or just helping themselves!!!!!!!

Helpful?
starstar_borderstar_borderstar_borderstar_border
L. Stockton
August 28th, 2017 Rocky Mount, NC

I was stuck in a foreign country with no money or place to go. I contacted the local Salvation army, seeking food and shelter. NO ONE returned my repeated phone calls. When I finally got back to the U.S., I sent many messages to the main Salvation Army and also emails, asking for an explanation, NO ONE ever responded. My aunt spent her entire life giving to the Salvation Army and died as a Major with this organization. I wonder what she would think of this, were she alive today.

Helpful?