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UCC begins disaster response to Hurricane Katrina

August 29, 2005

Hurricane Katrina, a Category 4 hurricane, stormed ashore the U.S. Gulf Coast this morning with extraordinarily strong winds and heavy rains. Extensive wind damage and flooding is anticipated along the Gulf Coast to the Ohio River Valley.

Hurricane Katrina, a Category 4 hurricane, stormed ashore the U.S. Gulf Coast this morning with extraordinarily strong winds and heavy rains.  Extensive wind damage and flooding is anticipated along the projected  track of the storm from the Gulf Coast to the Ohio River Valley. Katrina crossed southern Florida on Friday resulting in 9 deaths and extensive flooding.

One Great Hour of Sharing is rushing $25,000 to Church World Service for the initial response to Hurricane Katrina.

"At this point we pray and wait.  We are grateful to have One Great Hour of  Sharing offering funds and UCC Disaster Network in place so we are able to respond as soon as it becomes safe to do so," said Susan Sanders, Minister for Global Sharing of Resources.

UCC National Disaster Ministries' staff have been in contact with Conference Disaster Coordinators, Alan Coe from South Central Conference;  Will Rabert from Southeast Conference; Bill Wealand from Florida Conference and Shari Prestemon, Executive Director of  Back Bay Mission, Biloxi, Mississippi to express concern and offer One Great Hour of Sharing financial support for clean up and recovery in aftermath of this storm.  Contact has not yet been made with staff of Dillard University in New Orleans.

Back Bay Mission staff have evacuated to safety away from the coast and will return to Biloxi as soon as it is safe to do so. 

Will Rabert and Alan Coe are prepared to travel to the disaster area as soon as possible  to provide assistance to UCC congregations, institutions and local communities as they assess recovery needs. 

Church World Service Disaster Response and Recovery Liaisons are on call to work with local agencies to organize and to address the unmet needs of those affected by Hurricane Katrina.

How you can help:

1. Pray for people who live in communities affected by hurricanes.

2. To help those affected by disasters you may send gifts payable to your congregation marked for "Emergency USA " with the request they be sent through your Conference office on to Wider Church Ministries.

OR

3. Send gifts payable to Wider Church Ministries and marked in the memo portion "Emergency USA" to the Office for Global Sharing of Resources; Wider Church Ministries; 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115.

OR

4. Make a secure on-line donation now by clicking on the Emergency USA button on this page.

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