AWF Disaster Response Update

May 18, 2021

The Alabama-West Florida Conference continues to respond in several areas of our conference. Below is an update of the disaster response work. 

Hurricane Michael
Made landfall October 10, 2018

As our UMCOR grant for Hurricane Michael is quickly ending, here is an update on what our program was able to achieve with this grant.

We started with over $5 million from UMCOR and leveraged an additional $3.4 million in FEMA appeals, state and local grants, and through nonprofit partnerships. By the end of the program we will have:
-helped over 220 households recover from Hurricane Michael;
-repaired over 150 homes;
-built 41 houses from the ground up.

Lee County Tornado
Touched down March 3, 2019

Our Lee County Recovery team has done outstanding work thanks to the leadership of Rev. Lisa Pierce and Alabama Rural Ministries. From day one they have been a staple of hope in their communities. In addition to UMCOR dollars, Rev. Pierce was able to leverage funds through multiple partnerships with nonprofits. It was those partnerships that helped bolster the success of their program. To date, they have:
-assisted over 100 families in their recovery;
-completed over 60 home repairs.

Hurricanes Sally and Zeta
Made landfall September 16, 2020 and October 28, 2020, respectively

Our Hurricane Sally/Zeta recovery is in full swing. Because we still had trained case managers on staff, we were able to respond much quicker with our recovery program. We have received a grant from UMCOR in the amount of $370,000 for the purposes of helping 37 families recover from damages sustained in the storms. There are currently seven cases successfully closed and six active projects, with more making it through the project approval process each week. We are currently accepting volunteers and donations for this recovery effort!

Four-county Tornado
Touched down March 25, 2021

On March 25th, a storm front came through our conference that produced a tornado that began in Hale County, ran through Perry and Bibb Counties, and finally ended in Chilton County. At times, this EF3 tornado was over a mile wide and left a trail of destruction in its path. Because we are still running other recovery programs, we have been able to respond on the ground quickly with case management. We are estimating that there are between 20 and 30 homes that were destroyed whose owners did not have insurance. While we do not have any grants that have been awarded yet, what we do have are some helpful partners who are walking alongside us to help with logistics and fundraising. More to come on that! 

If your church is interested in sending teams or becoming involved with the conference disaster response ministry, contact Rev. Chris Ackerman. To financially donate, click here