Disaster Response Team Begins Rebuilding


The heavy rains, and devastating floods, came and went in September.
And while the story moved out of the headlines weeks ago, it is far from over. The rebuilding will last many more months.
After spending more two months performing initial clean up, while continuing to assess damage resulting from the historic floods, the North Georgia Conference Disaster Response volunteers has only recently begun the rebuilding process.
“It may seem slow, but this has been a deliberate process,” stated Mike Yoder, North Georgia disaster response coordinator.  “Our volunteers have spent a lot of prep time just cleaning out the locations that were water damaged.  While that’s been going on, other volunteers have spent countless hours evaluating people’s needs and collecting building materials.”
During this time of assessment and administration, disaster volunteers have been housed in the United Methodist Center.  Now that volunteers have begun to transition into the rebuilding and repairing process, volunteers have moved into a warehouse located in Douglasville.   
“The new space is excellent and filled with merchandise like sheet rock and other building products,” stated Yoder.  “Being in the conference offices has been good, but this move will help us and our construction superintendant to dispatch case workers and construction teams to go out into the field to repair homes.”
The North Georgia Conference would also like to find a church or related-agency on the west side of Atlanta with storage space to operate from. The space needs 24-hour access and a door that will accommodate a forklift.
There is also need for housing for volunteers from out of state. If your church can house volunteers, please contact the flood response line: 770-739-9537.
More than $90,000 has been received from individuals, churches, and conference agencies.  When asked what volunteers are needing this week, Yoder admits that financial assistance is always welcomed. 
“The Conference and churches have been very supportive financially, and otherwise,” Yoder said. “Primarily we need prayer for the teams that are going out, prayers for the case workers, and prayers for the families in need.” 
The Disaster Response Committee is working to build Care Teams. Stephen Ministers would be very well-suited for these groups. If you or anyone in your church is interested in joining a care team, to be available to listen and talk to families and individuals who have lost their homes or suffered from disaster, the need is great. Contact Phil Schroder at phil@ngumc.org.
Disaster Response is a ministry of the Board of Outreach housed in the Connectional Ministries Office.  For more information about the Disaster response process, visit http://www.ngumc.org/pages/detail/660.