Update: August 24, 2016
From Len and Carrie, DRS Regional managers in Louisiana:
"We have spent this morning in Denham Springs, Louisiana, which is one of the towns that was especially hard-hit by the flooding.
The overwhelming landscape that you see after a flood is the debris in front of everyone's home - appliances, furniture, drywall, insulation. But then you see something that poignantly stands out as a reminder of how personal these losses are - a child's bed, a crib, a grandfather clock.
We are meeting today, and in the next two days, with local recovery groups that are responding to both the March flooding and this August flooding to let them know what services World Renew will have available for them as they begin their long-term recovery."
“Massive flooding in Louisiana over the weekend of August 13, 2016 hit areas that were already underwater in March. Unbelievably, last weekend’s flooding was even worse than the unprecedented, historic disaster Louisiana residents experienced last spring,” said Len and Carrie Blaukamp, regional managers for World Renew Disaster Response Services (DRS) in a response to the March – and now August’s floods. (Read more about our response here)
Earlier in the year, unseasonable tornadoes sprang up from Illinois to Texas and Alabama during the last week of 2015, and Winter Storm Goliath spilled massive flooding into 2016 (click here to read more about our response). The heavy rain caused the Mississippi River to crest at 15 feet above flood stage in some areas in January 2016. Homes and towns in the path of massive flooding from 16 breached levees were evacuated.
Shortly after the disasters, regional managers from World Renew Disaster Response Services (DRS) spent time in Texas, Mississippi, Illinois, and Missouri assessing the damage, offering assistance, and organizing with officials and other responders.
In early June, more flooding impacted already saturated areas in Texas. Later that month, World Renew regional managers met with more than a dozen flood-affected communities throughout Louisiana, Missouri, and Texas, offering services, and planning for a long-term response.
West Virginia experienced massive flooding after heavy rains on June 22. Volunteers provided clean-up services for two weeks in July. Regional managers connected with partner organizations as well as state and local officials within 24 hours of the flooding and will be setting the stage to assist communities in the months to come.
Unmet needs assessments took place in Missouri and Mississippi during the summer of 2016, and as of August, more are being planned.
World Renew DRS continues to help homeowners and communities affected by the storms, offering unmet needs assessments, capacity-building training, reconstruction, and other services. The recovery efforts are still in the early stages and you can support and care for survivors in Christ’s name by donating to North American Disasters 2016.
To learn more about the services World Renew DRS provides and to volunteer, please visit worldrenew.net/drs.