News from UMCOR Jan 2018

The following news is from Sheryl Crumrine, UMCOR Mission Support for the Central Texas Conference of the UMC. For more information about becoming a Disaster Response volunteer, contact Dave Scott at txgolfersall@gmail.com.

 

Dear Friends,

God’s Love in Action!

The Central Texas Conference is already making a difference for people whose lives were upended by the 2017 hurricanes. The generosity and love of the CTCUMC was on full display as hundreds of people took Early Response Team (ERT) training after the hurricanes of 2017, people put together thousands of hygiene kits and cleaning buckets, and teams went to the Gulf Coast to help survivors begin to recover.

The Rio Texas Conference remains our priority. As the country’s attention moved from Harvey to Irma to Maria and then to the horrific wildfires in California, the numbers of teams going to the Texas gulf coast has declined significantly. They remain in desperate need of our help.

For badged UMCOR Early Responders (ERTs), now is the time to pull together a team of ERTs from your neighboring churches or to join an established team. If you only have a person or two, but not a full team, sign up and we can match you to others to make up a full team.  Rio Texas is also open to receiving teams for rebuilding. This would be an outstanding adult or youth mission trip.

FUNDS AVAILABLE!  People of our Conference have also given generously to support Harvey recovery. Because of this generosity, UMCOR can provide funding for UMCOR-badged teams as they head south to work. Please don’t let funding be the obstacle that keeps your team from responding to Hurricane Harvey. Because of the generosity of our Conference, we can subsidize building materials and supplies. Contact Ginger Watson for more information.

Tarrant County Evacuees Blessed by CTCUMC! Approximately 200 people chose to stay in Tarrant County after evacuating their homes because of Hurricane Harvey. We have been working closely with Catholic Charities and other partners to help these families get back on their feet. Because of the generosity of the CTCUMC, 40 families received the furniture that they needed to start again. The First Street Mission of FUMC Fort Worth provided start-up kits that supplied the families with towels, bedding, kitchen essentials and other basic needs.

Puerto Rico Receiving Specialized Early Response Teams.  UMCOR has received a formal invitation from Bishop Hector Ortiz of the Methodist Church – Puerto Rico requesting volunteers to support reconstruction following Hurricanes Irma and Maria.  They are looking for very experienced teams who are skilled with tarping, and who can stabilize windows and doors. At this stage, they want to make it possible for families to shelter in place at their homes until rebuilding can begin, which may be as much as a year away.  This will be physically demanding work. Electricity is not reliable and the conditions are very primitive.

If you are interested in assisting in Puerto Rico, you will need to follow the protocol established between UMCOR and the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico.