SHOWING WE CARE: The Salvation Army Mildura Corps Captain, David Davis.

There is no substitute for face-to-contact with people already marginalised with society, according to the Salvation Army’s David Davis.

Captain Davis says the Salvation Army in Sunraysia has continued personal contact with people using its community support services.

“I believe it is important to maintain face-to-face contact with people and what we have been doing has been well received,’’ he said.

“Many of the people we seeing are already marginalised with society and we are showing we care.”

While the Salvation Army has moved worship services online, Capt Davis says “we can supplement what we do but it is no substitute” for people meeting each Sunday.

“When churches are again allowed to be open and people gather, there will be members of the Salvation Army here welcoming the return,” he said.

“Whether some might have got used to not coming or they will be back with a vengeance … I don’t know.”

Capt Davis, who recently returned to Mildura after deployment as an Australian Defence Force chaplain supporting troops in Melbourne as part of the COVID-19 emergency, also said local support had remained steady for the Salvation Army’s Thrift shops in the region.

He said trading hours had been reduced with many of their volunteers in the COVID-19 vulnerable age group.

“But there are still many volunteers still helping out,” he said.

The Salvation Army has just entered its 140th year in Australia after its first corps was established in Adelaide in 1880.

Two young officers from Melbourne were sent to Mildura in November 1891 to commence the Salvation Army’s first services in the then Church of England Hall in Seventh Street.