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Disaster Relief for Hurricane Irma

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WHAT IS BEING DONE TO PROVIDE HELP FROM KENTUCKY?

Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief has made a commitment to help the people affected by Hurricane Irma long after the nation’s attention has turned elsewhere.

This dangerous hurricane has caused mass evacuations, massive power outages, and tremendous loss to thousands of people in Florida.

Florida Baptist and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers are staged and ready to respond in the aftermath of this dangerous storm.  Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief continues to be on standby for response to Florida, even as it continues with response to hard-hit areas of Texas in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.  We anticipate trained teams will be needed for weeks to assist in the recovery of this damaging storm.

Director Coy Webb reminds generous givers that Florida authorities are discouraging donations of goods, such as bottled water and clothing.  They continue to stress that monetary donations are the best way to help those affected by this massive storm.

  

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?

  • First of all, pray. Pray for those impacted, the first responders, emergency management leaders and Florida Disaster Relief and Southern Baptist Convention leaders as they seek to plan how we might respond in an effective way in the right timing. Pray for wisdom in planning and safety while traveling. Pray that God will open doors to the Gospel in this time of tragedy that teams might share the life-giving hope of Christ. Finally, pray that God’s will be done and that He be glorified in the midst of this tragedy.
  • Second, give. You can donate through the Kentucky Baptist Convention either by mailing checks designated for disaster relief or by giving online where all received contributions go to Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief efforts and to assist those affected by disasters. 
    Your church can collect gift cards to be sent to our partner Southern Baptist convention in Florida where they will be distributed to those in need. Remember, these gift cards allow the survivors to purchase items they need and the dignity of making the purchase themselves. 
  • Third, Prepare to go!  Certified disaster relief volunteers will be responding immediately. If you are interested in becoming involved with Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief learn more at www.kybaptist.org/dr. The best way to serve effectively is to become a trained and credentialed Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief volunteer. The next training will be held in Richmond, KY, on Saturday, Sept. 16. 

    Untrained individuals or church groups can volunteer to assist at 
    www.namb.net/send-relief/disaster-relief/send-hope


HOW LONG WILL THE RECOVERY LAST?

At this point, there is no way to tell. Much like the Katrina response, rebuilding after Irma and Harvey will take years. Volunteer teams from Kentucky Baptist Convention churches will be needed. Our Mission Mobilization team will post opportunities when the time comes.


WHAT SHOULD I NOT DO?

While there is always a desire to collect donations such as water, clothes or household products, these are not always the best. It is expensive to ship items and the required logistics on the ground for sorting, storing and distributing is a burden on the receiving community. Sometimes, we can also send well-intentioned but unneeded supplies.


WHAT ELSE CAN YOU TELL ME ABOUT KENTUCKY BAPTIST DISASTER RELIEF?

Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief has more than 4,500 certified volunteers capable of assisting those affected by natural and man-made disasters in Kentucky, the nation, and around the world.

 The ministry has 45 mobile response units across the state that stand ready to provide disaster victims and relief workers with hot meals, showers, child care, laundry facilities and water purification.

 Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief also has chainsaw crews and mud-out teams that help homeowners who have nowhere else to turn when their homes are damaged by fallen trees and floods.

Equally important are the more than 200 chaplains trained to minister to the spiritual and emotional needs of those impacted by a disaster and the workers who help them.

 Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief’s prayer is that these teams can bring help, healing and hope to the tens of thousands of people affected by Hurricane Irma.

 Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief is the humanitarian arm of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, the state’s largest religious organization with 2,400 affiliated Baptist churches and more than 750,000 Southern Baptists.