The Salvation Army is an integral part of the Christian Church, although distinctive in government and practice. The Army’s doctrine follows the mainstream of Christian belief and its articles of faith emphasise God’s saving purposes. Its objects are ‘the advancement of the Christian religion… of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole. The movement, founded in 1865 by William Booth, has spread from London, England, to many parts of the world.
The Southern Africa Territory of The Salvation Army is one of 10 Territories on the African continent, and 6 Commands. (A Territory is a country, part of a country or several countries combined, in which Salvation Army work is organised under a territorial commander; while a Command is a smaller type of Territory, directed by an officer commanding.) Africa’s Territories and Commands stretch from Southern Africa in the south northwards to Nigeria; and from Kenya and Mozambique in the east to Ghana and Liberia in the west.
The Southern Africa Territory encompasses five countries: South Africa, Namibia, the Island of St Helena, Lesotho and Swaziland. The Territory’s ministry includes day care centres for both pre-school children and senior citizens, goodwill centres, health services, crèches, children’s, street children’s, abused women’s, men’s and elderly homes, community programmes, rehabilitation centres, social centres and schools.