Disaster Relief Update

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up as you are already doing" (1 Thessalonians 5:11 HCSB). 

Baptist relief answers new round of plains storms

ALPHARETTA, Ga. – Southern Baptist Disaster Relief (SBDR) volunteers moved into action following another round of deadly storms in Oklahoma, Missouri and Arkansas over the weekend. A series of tornadoes north of Oklahoma City claimed at least 14 lives Friday. Four people were killed by floodwaters in Arkansas.

“Southern Baptist volunteers continue to serve people who are hurting and in need,” said Fritz Wilson, executive director for disaster relief at the North American Mission Board. “One of NAMB’s core values is ‘Whatever it takes.’ That spirit is exemplified in Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers. Volunteers were scheduled to go to one location and changed at a moments notice to respond to a new area of need.”

DR OK Moore Tornado 6-4The critical nature of SBDR ministry was evident again Saturday following the storms in the Oklahoma City area. Sam Porter, disaster relief director for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, relayed the experience of a chaplain serving near the city.

“We had a chaplain with an assessor,” said Porter. “They were visiting with two women, neighbors who had storm damage.” As the assessor spoke with one woman, the other told the chaplain, “I have to tell you something. I’ve been so overwhelmed by all that has happened here I was going to take my life today. But now I know God cares for me and people care.” Porter reported the chaplain prayed with the woman as she placed her faith in Christ.

June 3 marked the 16th straight day of SBDR response in the Oklahoma City area, with more than 400 cleanup and recovery jobs completed, according to Porter, but with at least 200 more job requests. Porter said insurance estimates show that each cleanup job saves homeowners an average of $8,000. He added that the tornado that went through Oklahoma City Friday never churned into the ground and could have been much more destructive. Porter thanked Southern Baptists for their prayers.

Assessment teams were on their way to St. Louis Monday where storms ran a parallel track some 40 miles long, according to Missouri Baptist Convention SBDR director Dwaine Carter. Carter said volunteers are on their way from Kansas-Nebraska, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee to aid Missouri SBDR volunteers. He hopes to have teams serving by Wednesday. Twelve days of clean-up and recovery operations had just completed in Hannibal when Friday’s storms hit the St. Louis area.

NAMB dispatched a semi-truck loaded with requested supplies to St. Louis on Sunday; primarily plastic rolled roofing, furring strips and SBDR teddy bears. Another SBDR truck from NAMB is in route to deliver 52,000 new clothing items donated by retailers, which volunteers will distribute this weekend through Southern Hills Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, near Moore.

DR OK Moore Tornado 6-5 2New opportunities, like the clothing distribution, allow SBDR to partner with local churches in the affected area to bring help, healing and hope in new ways, Wilson said.

“SBDR would not exist without the strong network and partnership between the state conventions and national entities,” said Wilson. “SBDR is the Cooperative Program lived out to its fullest.”

Wilson said SBDR officials are also monitoring wildfires in Arizona and California, along with potential flooding in Iowa and the Midwest for possible responses. Baptist Convention of Iowa SBDR director Ty Berry said although rivers were high in the state, flooding had remained minimal so far.

To help build awareness of the ministry of SBDR, a television commercial began running in Oklahoma City markets over the weekend. To view the TV spot, visit http://baptistrelief.org/ and click “Media.”

NAMB coordinates and manages Southern Baptist responses to major disasters through partnerships with 42 state Baptist conventions, most of which have their own state disaster relief programs.

Southern Baptists have 82,000 trained volunteers—including chaplains—and 1,550 mobile units for feeding, chainsaw, mud-out, command, communication, childcare, shower, laundry, water purification, repair/rebuild and power generation. SBDR is one of the three largest mobilizers of trained disaster relief volunteers in the United States, along with the American Red Cross and The Salvation Army.

To donate to SBDR efforts, contact the Baptist convention in your state or visit namb.net/disaster-relief-donations. Other ways to donate are to call 1-866-407-NAMB (6262) or mail checks to NAMB, P.O. Box 116543, Atlanta, GA 30368-6543. Designate checks for “Disaster Relief.”

Joe Conway writes for the North American Mission Board. 

Sandy Rebuild Project Now Underway

DR Sandy Rcovery Longwood U The Superstorm Sandy clean-up and recovery work shifted into home repair before the end of the Sandy Spring Break Initiative as teams began replacing dry-wall that earlier teams had removed from flood damaged homes.

May 1, 2013, marks the official beginning of the long-term Sandy Rebuild Project to complete repairs on homes in New York and New Jersey. Construction teams are needed now to work on homes and to complete the set-up of the Base Camps which will house additional volunteers this summer.

Volunteers who are interested in assisting with the Base Camp feeding operation, housekeeping and warehouse duties are also needed.

Visit the Sandy Rebuild website for more information and instructions on how to register. www.namb.net/Sandy.

SBDR National Events

BGR/SBDR Sphere Project Training  

BGR Logo Baptist Global Response (BGR) and the North American Mission Board (NAMB) are partnering together to offer an International Disaster Assessment training for SBDR key volunteers. This training will be a pilot project to help BGR develop a cadre of volunteers who can respond after a Level 3 international disaster. Dates for the training are July 15-19, 2013, 8:00am to 5:00pm., at the North American Mission Board in Alpharetta, GA, by invitation from the State Disaster Relief Directors. Space is limited.

2013 SBDR Roundtable 

This summer the SBDR Roundtable will be held at the Ponderosa Retreat and Conference Center in Larkspur, CO. The dates are August 12-15, 2013. Please contact your State Disaster Relief Director for more information.

In the News

Ferguson residents begin massive storm clean-up
Becky Grimes was with a group of chainsaw volunteers from Missouri Baptist Disaster Relief >> 

Baptists deliver aid to storm-ravaged Oklahoma community in more ways than one
Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief teams partnered with Southern Baptist relief teams from across the country to offer aid and hope to tornado ravaged communities in Oklahoma.>> 

7 states receiving Southern Baptist relief
Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers are active in seven states responding to damage from floods, tornadoes and other disasters on the eve of hurricane season.>>  

Tennessee Baptist open new disaster relief center
On Saturday, officials from the organization held a ribbon cutting ceremony in Mt. Juliet.>>  

Cottonwood Heights emergency planning get shaken up during Shake Out
Other volunteers practiced running a shelter with cots in a gymnasium, Southern Baptist Disaster Relief prepared a warm meal.>>  

Upcoming Trainings

The following is a list of trainings that we have received information from convention DR leaders. Check your convention's website if you do not see training listed here.

Arkansas Baptist State Convention Disaster Relief
More information at www.absc.org/vols-and-missions/disaster-relief 

California Baptist State Convention Disaster Relief
For more information go to www.csbdrm.com 

Colorado Baptist General Convention Disaster
Scheduled trainings on www.ColoradoBaptists.org/dr 

Florida Baptist Convention Disaster Relief
For training dates and times please go to www.flbaptist.org 

Georgia Baptist Convention Disaster Relief
Online registration can be found at www.gbcdisasterrelief.org 

Illinois Baptist Convention Disaster Relief
Email Rex Alexander if interested in IL training:  rexalexander@ibsa.org 

Indiana Baptist Convention Disaster Relief
Register on-line at www.scbi.org 

Kentucky Disaster Relief Chaplaincy Training (Walton)
Email Coy Webb if interested in attending: coy.webb@kybaptist.org  

Louisiana Baptist Convention Disaster Relief Training  
For more information you can go to www.lbc.org/disaster 

Baptist State Convention of Michigan
For training dates please go to www.bscm.org/dr  

Minnesota/Wisconsin Disaster Relief Training
Go to www.mwbc.org for more information

Missouri Disaster Relief Training
Find additional information about training at www.mobaptist.org 

Baptist Conventin of New England Disaster Relief Training
For more information contact Bruce James at www.bcne.net 

New Mexico Baptist Disaster Relief Training
Contact Ira Shelton at disasterrelief@bcnm.com for registration information.

New York Disaster Relief Training
For more information go to www.bcnysbc.org.

North Carolina Baptist Disaster Relief Training 
Register at www.baptistsonmission.org/disasterrelieftraining 

Baptist Convention of Pennsylvania/South Jersey Disaster Relief
For more information click on link for Disaster Relief Training

South Carolina Baptist Convention Disaster Relief 
Full details and registration available at www.scbaptist.org/dr 

Southern Baptists of Texas Convention Disaster Relief Training
For more information go to www.sbtexas.com/dr.

Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief Training
For more information go to www.tndisasterrelief.org – training opportunities.

Texas Baptist Men Disaster Relief Training
For more information go to www.texasbaptistmen.org - DR Training dates listed under ministries

Utah/Idaho Disaster Relief Training
For more information go to www.uisbc.org 

Baptist General Association of Virginia Disaster Relief
For training opportunities go to www.vbmb.org/ministries/Disaster-Relief/training.cfm 

Please call the Mississippi Baptist Convention  if you would like more information about Disaster Relief training at 601.292.3339 or 1.800.748.1651

Donate to Southern Baptist Disaster Relief

Donations are fully tax deductible and 100% of all gifts are used to meet the needs of hurting people in the wake of disasters. Donations can be made online, by phone (866) 407-6262, or by mail. Checks should be made payable to "North American Mission Board" and sent to Disaster Relief Fund, P.O. Box 116543, Atlanta, GA 30368-6543.

Donations can also be made to individual Baptist State Convention Disaster Relief Ministries. Find contact information for Southern Baptist State Convention offices here.  

Disaster Relief Activity to Date:

2013 Activity Report: Year-to-date

Professions of Faith 25
Gospel Presentations 206
Chaplaincy Contacts 1,578
Ministry Contacts 2,880
Other Decisions 5
Volunteer Days 17,076
Meals Prepared 111,969
Chainsaw Jobs 520
Mud-out Jobs 905
Fire Cleanup/Debris Removal 0
Repair and Roofing Jobs 77
Children 74
Showers 10,582
Laundry Loads 2,405
Gallons of Water Purified 0
Messages Sent 17



To contact the Disaster Operations Center, call 1.800.462.8657 or e-mail dr_offsite@namb.net.

A Southern Baptist Convention entity supported by the Cooperative Program and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering®.

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