Across the Florida Panhandle, there are still significant unmet needs from Hurricane Michael in 2018. Households in both coastal and inland communities are still awaiting help to rebuild or rehabilitate their homes. UCC Disaster Ministries has a broad program of support for the Panhandle's recovery - most recently salary for a construction manager in Calhoun and Jackson counties and a $5,000 seed grant for Holmes County recovery.
In Puerto Rico, powerful earthquakes have killed one person, injured several, unleashed small landslides and caused homes and other buildings to crack and crumble. The earthquakes and aftershocks have taken out power across most of the island, also leaving hundreds of thousands without water. UCC Disaster Ministries is issuing an emergency appeal to assist the people of the island. Goal: $250,000
Here are recent grants approved by UCC Disaster Ministries.
A pilot program to help communities launch long-term recovery following disasters is growing ecumenically. Over the past two years, the disaster ministries of the United Church of Christ, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and Church of the Brethren have joined forces to pioneer the Disaster Recovery Support Initiative (DRSI) in nine states and U.S. territories. Now DRSI is folding into the disaster programs of Church World Service (CWS).
Volunteers are now being accepted to repair and rebuild homes in Eastern North Carolina. Hurricanes Dorian (2019), Florence (2018), and Matthew (2016) caused severe flooding and wind damage. There are 15 centers accepting volunteers of all skill levels to help repair homes affected by natural disasters.
UCC Disaster Ministries just contributed $10,000 toward an ecumenical response through CWS Japan to assist 1,000 families with home and livelihood restoration, volunteer mobilization to clear debris, and capturing of lessons learned for reducing risk in the disasters that are sure to follow as climate change brings more unprecedented destructive weather.
UCC Disaster Ministries has contributed $15,000 to support care for 25 orphaned, abused, neglected or abandoned children evacuated from Grand Bahama after Hurricane Dorian destroyed the Children’s Home there.
Churches in Puerto Rico are at the stressful and demanding front lines of meeting needs left by Hurricane Maria two years ago. They include UCC Disaster Ministries’ Hurricane Maria recovery partner IEUPR (Iglesia Evangelica Unida de Puerto Rico). More than 80 IEUPR pastors and staff got a break October 16-21 at a retreat in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, organized by the IEUPR and funded by UCC Disaster Ministries.
Send joyful Christmas greetings and provide your friends and family a practical tool to get prepared for natural disasters at the same time. Disaster Preparedness Christmas Cards from United Church of Christ Disaster Ministries include a complete up-to-date list of what should be included in an individual ‘Go-Bag’ – a bag that is prepared to grab and ‘go’ when a disaster strikes. A faithful reminder to start the year off prepared!
$5,000 seed grants from UCC Disaster Ministries will go toward costs for four Hurricane Michael long-term recovery groups in the Florida Panhandle - Liberty (County) Strong, Gadsden (County) Strong, Citizens of Gulf County Recovery Team and the North Florida Inland Long-Term Recovery Group (Jackson and Calhoun Counties). The UCC also is supporting recovery in Bay and Washington counties, including with recruitment of volunteer work teams.