Hurricane Laura Update
September 2, 2020
The Hurricane Laura relief effort is under way. While the damage in Louisiana is being assessed and the vast area secured, we have started shipping truck-loads of supplies to LaFayette.
This week four truck loads are being delivered to Asbury U.M.C., which serves as a regional collection site. Supplies were collected at 19 Houston area congregations over the weekend, including tarping materials, tools, food, water, baby products, hygiene and cleaning supplies.
The Louisiana Conference leadership has asked that teams from out of state not deploy quite yet, but wait until the invitation is extended so they can make sure it is safe and they are ready for trained volunteers to come.
The extent of damage in Texas, was limited mostly to the area surrounding Orange and Newton County. So far the State of Texas has identified 120 homes in Newton County that suffered damage. Two truck-loads of supplies are being sent this week to Newton and Orange.
Additionally, we are in the process of recruiting and dispatching trained mission teams into the area. We have also partnered with Mennonite Disaster Services who will be sending teams on a weekly basis to Newton. Texas Annual Conference is providing support for their operations, including housing and feeding the teams.
How to Help
Texas Annual Conference congregations can help the relief effort in several ways.
- Contribute financially to UMCOR or the Texas Annual Conference here: https://www.txcumc.org/texasrecovers.
- Prepare to deploy trained Response Teams. Please Godfrey Hubert at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and guidelines. Because of the hazardous nature of the work, only trained and experienced volunteers are being sent.
Hurricane Laura Update
From the Desk of Dr. Godfrey Hubert
August 31, 2020
Many of the affected areas do not have water or electricity yet, so the biggest need right now is money for supplies. Churches, if you are interested in helping, please send your donations here and we will make sure that your donations help all Hurricane Laura victims.
Additionally, the area is not secure yet, so do not send volunteers. For more information, please contact email@example.com.
A Message from Bishop Scott J. Jones on Hurricane Laura
A Message from Rev. Kip Gilts, Assistant to the Bishop
"Another hurricane season is upon us and several people find themselves in the path of the storm. Know that people all over the Texas Annual Conference are praying for those most deeply impacted by Hurricane Laura. If you are in need of assistance, please contact Christine Riggle at our Mission Depot (firstname.lastname@example.org). If you were able to volunteer or your church is interested in providing shelter, please let Godfrey Hubert, our Conference Disaster Readiness Coordinator, know at www.txcdr.org."
United Methodists across the Texas Conference are watching Hurricane Laura carefully and preparing to help after the storm has passed and it is safe. Areas in our Conference are already being evacuated.
How can your churches help right now?
- If your church has been trained in hurricane preparedness, please stand by for further instructions via our app.
- If your church has not been trained in hurricane preparedness, please contact Dr. Godfrey Hubert at: email@example.com for a short training.
- All volunteers, please follow all COVID-19 safety guidelines including wearing masks, washing hands and social distancing.
Volunteers are all on alert and equipment across the state is being prepared with extra supplies coming in from churches.
Dr. Godfrey Hubert, Texas Annual Conference Readiness Coordinator said his team is always prepared and volunteers will be ready for deployment when it is safe.
“COVID-19 has will make cleanup a little more difficult,” he said. “But we are dedicated cleaning up and mucking and gutting homes while also making sure all of our volunteers are following COVID-19 protocols.”
Dr. Godfrey says that every congregation that designates a Disaster Readiness Coordinator (DRC) and his disaster team will receive training, guidance, Alert Media communication license(s), and be included in preparation and coordination.
Serving Others Through Texas Recovers
Serving on a team means we get to help our community through relief efforts. Many people are displaced from Hurricane Laura, so we need all hands-on deck after it is safe!
If you need help, please contact Director of Development Sonya Meyers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our friends in Southeast Texas and Louisiana are going to need our help as they recover. Please give generously by donating to UMCOR or giving to the Texas Annual Conference Giving portal for those affected in Southeast Texas by Hurricane Laura. All funds not used for Hurricane Laura will be used for future disaster relief.
UMCOR advance number 901670