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Planning &

Needs Assessment Studies

The primary purpose of a Planning Study is to aid The Salvation Army unit to identify:


            • Current mission strengths

            • Community trends that impact Army mission

            • Current and emerging community needs to which the local Army unit is

               positioned to respond

            • Concrete mission strategies


The Planning Study is undertaken when a new stage in the unit’s mission development is being considered and shows the way forward by identifying the strengths, data, resources, tools and methodologies that will make this possible. For a Planning Study the following must be researched, evaluated, and used in the plans for mission growth:


  • Opportunities and challenges within the                                                            community that relate to The Salvation Army’s

       mission and missional strengths

  • Community strengths with strong potential for

       partnership and/or collaboration.  

  • Services/ministries currently offered by groups,

       agencies, or churches in the area.  


  • The relative strengths of the identified services/ministries in the community and particularly those in the area served by the corps. 


  • The measured outcomes and impact of services rendered by The Salvation Army to effectively help people move forward with their lives. 


  • Public perception of the strengths and effectiveness of The Salvation Army in the community by individuals, public and private agencies, and churches. 


  • Ways and extent the soldiery (Salvation Army church membership), clients, advisory organizations, foundations, donors, and general public perceive and support the work and service of the Army.  This process must include:


  • Meeting with corps leadership and soldiers

  • Interviews/group meetings with service recipients

  • Interviews with community leaders


  • Analysis of implications of demographic trends in the corps neighborhood, city county and general service area including five and ten year projections for the services/ministries under consideration


  • Area in city where the Army would be best located to carry out its mission effectively and provide the most effective ministry and service


  • Service/ministry expansion recommendations that integrate corps and community strengths synergistically with the opportunities and needs of the identified community. Each recommendation for expansion of current existing strong ministries or addition of new ministries/services should contain:


  • An explanation of how the holistic mission of The Salvation Army will be advanced by the ministry/service

  • Verifiable potential for support and sustainability by the corps and community.

  • Priority and time lines for implementation, both operationally and long term. 

If you don't know where you are going, any path will take you there.

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