UCC Disaster Ministries

Disaster Ministries

Disaster Updates

Flint opened eyes to lead-tainted water systems

FLINT OPENED EYES TO LEAD-TAINTED WATER SYSTEMS Flint, Mich., is only one of thousands of U.S. communities with excessive lead levels in their water systems. In the third article of his series on infrastructure disasters, UCC Environmental Justice Ministries Minister Brooks Berndt examines the issue of water justice.

UCC gives hope to Ecuador community after double disaster

Residents of Sua, Ecuador, had already suffered damage to their homes and the loss of household furnishings and livestock to 4-foot-deep flooding in January when the April 2016 magnitude 7.8 earthquake added another layer of destruction. The back-to-back disasters greatly diminished coastal Sua's fishing and tourism industries, the community's economic base. With support from UCC Disaster Ministries, 33 Sua families will soon have access to flexible financing and training to help them resume their livelihoods.

Disaster volunteers urgently needed for South Carolina

Attention potential volunteers! South Carolina homeowners still struggling to recover from last fall's devastating floods need your help. Week-long work teams are being recruited now, especially and urgently for September and October. "We still have several survivors who can't afford hiring a contractor to repair their homes and are patiently waiting for help," said UCC Disaster Ministries Executive Zach Wolgemuth. 

Christian ethics and caring for our nation's infrastructure

In his second of three articles about the importance of repairing our nation's crumbling infrastructure, UCC Environmental Justice Minister Brooks Berndt cites the Christian ethic "of the common good, the shared elements of life that allow for not only human survival but human fulfillment."

Volunteers help war veteran salvage homeownership dream

For 48-year-old Iraq veteran Robert Z. of West Columbia, S.C., buying a house was an important step in his years-long recovery from war-related post-traumatic stress disorder.  But the storms of October 2015 caused damage that upset Robert's dreams - until UCC Disaster Ministries and its partners in the ecumenical Disaster Recovery Support Initiative stepped forward to help.  

Urgent Needs


Ecuador suffered a severe 7.8 earthquake on April 16, with subsequent aftershocks and quakes, leaving 663 dead and 6,274 injured. 28,827 people are in shelters.  Half a million people have been directly affected. The United Church of Christ One Great Hour of Sharing and The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Week of Compassion have issued a joint special appeal for $500,000 for Ecuador earthquake relief and recovery.  

Click here for more information including resources for education and action

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Disaster Recovery Volunteers Needed

Your service as a Disaster Recovery Volunteer helps people rebuild their physical homes and is an act of presence that indicates the commitment to walk beside disaster survivors as they seek to rebuild their lives. In particular need of volunteers right now: South Carolina, New Jersey and Texas.


Support U.S. Disaster Response

The water crisis in Flint, Mich.; floods and tornados across the U.S. South, Southwest and Midwest; wildfires in California - there are so many U.S. disaster recovery needs right now.  UCC Disaster Ministries has responded to requests for solidarity grants from congregations in California, South Carolina, Michigan and Missouri and from a long-term recovery group in Houston, Texas, that are on the front lines of response.  Read more in the Disaster Updates section of this website, and support these and other domestic response efforts through the UCC's USA Relief Fund.



Support International Disaster Response

UCC Disaster Ministries also is active internationally. Recent grants have gone to Ecuador for earthquake recovery, the Democratic Republic of Congo for flood recovery, Ethiopia for people hungry due to drought, and Fiji for relief efforts following devastating Tropical Cyclone Winston. The UCC is funding 50 new, earthquake-resistant homes in Nepal along with other long-term recovery activities following last year's devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake. Another major project is housing and livelihoods training in the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan in 2013. Read more in the Disaster Updates section of this website, and support these and other domestic response efforts through the International Emergency Relief Fund.




12 Ways to Help Disaster Survivors Recover Through UCC Disaster Ministries

In addition to the three ways listed above, this one-page flyer lists nine more ways - 12 in all - to help disaster survivors recover through UCC Disaster Ministries.  Have a look - and share widely!


Connect with UCC Disaster Ministries on Social Media!

Facebook: One Great Hour of Sharing (UCC)

Twitter: @OGHS_at_UCC

Contact Info

Zachary Wolgemuth
Executive for UCC Disaster Ministries
700 Prospect Ave
Cleveland, OH 44115

Contact Info

Diane Dicken
Administrative Assistant for Finance & Program
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44115