Community Provides Heartwarming Surprise to Salvation Army Club Member

Feb 13, 2024

The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club of Texarkana and the generous community came to the aid of a young member in need, providing him with a brand-new bike and ensuring his safety.

The Boys & Girls Club, known for its dedication to supporting local youth, discovered that Brandon’s bicycle lacked a crucial safety feature - brakes. Despite his resourcefulness in trying to create a functional bike, his makeshift brakes proved to be ineffective, putting him at serious risk.

What sets this story apart is Brandon’s unwavering commitment to his responsibilities. “Not only is he an active member at the Club, but he also takes it upon himself to ensure the safety of his sisters,” said Chasity Russell, The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club Manager in Texarkana. “Every day, he wakes them up, rides his bike to school, attends color guard practice, escorts his sisters to the Club, and later walks them home. He’s an incredible young man.”

Recognizing the risks associated with riding without functioning brakes, the Club shared his story on Facebook, seeking assistance. The response from the community was overwhelming. In less than 48 hours, generous community members contributed funds for a brand-new bike. Berridge Bikes, a local bike shop, donated a helmet, lock and lights to ensure his safety, even at night.

“In true Boys & Girls Club fashion, Brandon happened to be pulling up to the Club on his broken bike as Arkansas State Trooper Phifer, who was there to present the new bike to him, was pulling the new bike out of the back of a SUV,” said Russell. “Brandon stopped to ask if he could assist the officer in unloading the bike, all the while not knowing that the bicycle was actually for him.”

The Salvation Army operates 17 Boys & Girls Clubs in Texas. These unique places offer programs and services that exemplify and actively practice Christian principles.

“During the presentation of the new bike, Brandon was left speechless,” said Russell. “The community's ongoing support and generosity are instrumental in keeping our area youth safe and engaged at The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club.”

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