Disaster Response Update: South Carolina Flood

10/6/2015

From the North Alabama Annual Conference Office of Disaster Response & Recovery

As we are all aware, the flooding in South Carolina has been catastrophic. Lives have been lost, homes destroyed and families devastated by the loss caused by this flood. The Early Response Team Coordinator for the South Carolina Conference, Billy Robinson, has asked that NO ERTs deploy to South Carolina at this time. They currently have local ERTs who are cut off because of the damage to highways and roads. Please wait until a request has been given either by our Office or from the Southeastern Jurisdiction office of United Methodist Volunteers in Mission. Paulette West or Gray Miller will be the one releasing any requests from the SEJ Office of UMVIM. Currently, the inventory throughout the UMCOR Warehouse Network is well stocked with Cleaning (Flood) Buckets, so do not begin collecting items and assembling the buckets until requested. As a list of needed supplies are shared, we will pass them along to you at that time. [See message from the United Methodist Disaster Relief Warehouse in Decatur below.]

So what can we do? Right now is the most important time and here is what you can do for our neighbors in South Carolina:

  1. Pray! Immediately pray for two things. First, pray for God’s presence to be around them in ways they have never imagined, with His Peace. Second, pray for them to experience Comfort. Life has changed for them and it will never be the same. And we all know how unsettling that can be. Pray for them to experience His Comfort.
     
  2. Begin planning how you and your congregation can respond. If your congregation, or a network of congregations can put together a complete Team, now is the time for planning. Again, do NOT deploy but be ready to deploy at a moment’s notice. Prepare also any supplies, tools and materials necessary for muck-out operations now. Do not wait until the last minute. If your Team is not needed, then you have practiced well for the next time.
     
  3. Finally, the residents of South Carolina will need financial support. Unless a family had flood insurance, their losses will not be covered by homeowners or renters insurance. Many families and individuals will need help in the recovery operations. A lot of good organizations are asking for your financial support. But remember the UMCOR Advance special because 100% of your donations will go to the relief and recovery efforts. The United States Disaster Response Advance number is 901670. Have a designated offering at your church for this fund. Your treasurer can then mail the amount in with your church’s regular monthly remittance (Advance #901670).
     
  4. On the web go to www.umcor.org for information, tips and ideas of how you can help others.

We, your Office of Disaster Response And Recovery, ask for your prayers for us as we wait, plan, and prepare for when our assistance is needed. Please share this email with your fellow disciples and encourage them to sign up for these email alerts from our office. Thank you for your willingness to be the hands and feet of Jesus is someone’s darkness and despair.

In His Grace,
Randy Burbank
Disaster Response Coordinator for the North Alabama Annual Conference
Lead Pastor, Sheffield First United Methodist Church
Email: rburbank@umcna.org

 


From the United Methodist Disaster Relief Warehouse

With all the flooding on the East Coast, we know there will remain mold and mildew. It is still raining and the water is still rising. So it will be a few days before all the water starts to recede. Then people can start looking at the mud, dirt, trees, and logs that have drifted through doors that burst open from the pressure of flood waters and glass windows that burst under pressure.

If they have flood insurance, then they have help coming. But a lot of people will NOT have “flood insurance!” (This is NOT covered by home owners insurance.) Those without flood insurance are facing a huge task and they are “on their own!”

Then comes the “mucking out.” The people will need flat billed shovels, yard rakes and leather palm gloves (cloth backing) to pull their water soaked carpet up and two-wheeled wheel barrels, brooms and box fans.

After the wall covering, paneling, sheet rock, etc. are taken out of the house to “the right of way” by the street/road; then the garden sprayers are needed to kill the mold and mildew so that rebuilding can begin.

For those who still have jobs, they have to go back to work to be able to pay for food, clothing, repairs, the essentials for living and temporary housing. Cold weather is almost upon us and in less than 80 days, it will be Christmas.

Here is a list of items that the United Methodist Disaster Relief Warehouse is collecting for shipment to the flood areas:

  • 2 and 3 gallon garden sprayers
  • Flat billed Shovels
  • Leather palm work gloves (Cloth backing)
  • Garden rakes with 2 to 3 inch tongs
  • Brooms
  • 3 to 4 Mil black garbage bags
  • Two-wheeled wheel barrows (Wheel barrows should be disassembled for shipping)
  • Box fans

We are looking at a deadline of Monday, October 12, 2015, to have all items in the Decatur warehouse. [3220 Hwy 31 So., Building. F, Decatur, AL 35603; (256 )341-9961] We hope to ship on Tuesday, October 13, 2015.

Thank you for placing the U. M. warehouse in your annual budget for $10/month. It keeps us ready to respond when disasters like this occur.

 


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