Numerous states have been devastated or impacted by severe storms, flooding and hundreds of tornadoes in April and May. The storms and tornadoes ranged from Oklahoma to the Carolinas. States most severely impacted have been Alabama, Missouri, Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa and Illinois. But there was also significant damage in Texas, Oklahoma, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Louisiana and Ohio. While much of the nations focus is on the devastation in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham and St Louis the damage throughout the impacted areas is extensive. Scores of smaller and communities were damaged and will need assistance with their long-term recovery efforts.
In terms of flooding, the Ohio and Mississippi rivers are flooding and the impact is being felt from Cario, Il all the way down to the lower Mississippi Valley in Louisiana. Cities and towns are being flooded in Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana. In several cases levees have been blasted and flood gates opened to allow water to spill into flood plains to reduce the rivers crest and to reduce flooding in more populated areas. The water flow into the flood plains has flooded hundreds of square miles of farmland and dozens of smaller communities.
- At the request of International Orthodox Christian Charities, CWS is shipping 11,000 CWS Hygiene Kits to storm-damaged areas in Alabama
- CWS has shipped: 436 Emergency Clean-up Buckets,2800 CWS Hygiene Kits, 300 Wool Blankets, 30 CWS Baby Kits and 120 CWS School Kits to communities that include: Monmouth, IL, Gray, TN, Little Rock, AR, Raleigh, NC and Presby, AR The shipments are valued at $55,000. Requests for more material goods are being received daily.
- CWS Emergency Response Specialists are monitoring the many situations and remain in contact with Federal, State, Local and voluntary agencies. The Emergency Response Specialists are also in communication with churches and faith based organizations to assist them organizing immediate and long-term assistance. CWS will be considerably involved in the Long-term recovery process in the damaged communities.
- CWS has engaged in considerable work in many of the affected states, especially in establishing and training long-term recovery groups. CWS will be in contact with state, regional and local Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster partners to determine where needs exist for training and disaster recovery project development.
Total is $80,000. This includes $20,000 for material resources and shipping; $50,000 for emergency response grants (long-term recovery groups); $20,000 for staff development.
HOW TO HELP: Contributions to support CWS emergency response efforts may be made online, sent to your denomination, or to Church World Service, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515.
Church World Service is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of churches and agencies engaged in development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy.