World Renew is responding in Midwest communities where a fast-moving cold front spawned more than 75 tornadoes yesterday. Early Response Coordinators are being deployed as the agency’s Disaster Response Services (DRS) staff and regional managers meet today with state and federal agency representatives to coordinate a response.
“World Renew DRS is at the table today with FEMA and Illinois VOAD representatives to review the needs and determine a plan for response,” says Bill Adams, World Renew DRS director. “Coordinated efforts between non-government and faith-based organizations like World Renew and federal, state, and local agencies get effective help to people who need it most.” Currently, this includes, among other organizations, the Illinois VOAD (Voluntary Organization Active in Disaster) due to the severity of the damage in Washington, East Peoria, and Paduka, Illinois.
World Renew DRS Early Response Coordinators are tasked with providing immediate, door-to-door support to storm survivors. This on-the-ground presence gives project organizers a first-person understanding of the scope of the disaster and provides much needed support for survivors who need hope and practical guidance.
“World Renew DRS Early Response Coordinators are on the road shortly after a storm hits. They go into communities to assess damage and provide emotional and spiritual care: a hug and a prayer go a long way in the early hours after a disaster,” says Art Opperwall, World Renew DRS Program Manager. "The coordinators also connect with local church and government officials and others who are involved in early intervention and the initial organizing around long-term recovery."
In addition to involvement in planning for a response to yesterday’s deadly Midwest storms, World Renew DRS is currently responding to September flooding in Colorado, flooding in southern Alberta in June, Hurricane Sandy in Ocean County, New Jersey, and Hurricanes Isaac and Irene on the Gulf and East coasts.
For more information about the World Renew DRS, go to worldrenew.net/drs.
or designate your check “World Renew DRS” and mail to...
World Renew US
1700 28th Street SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49508-1407
World Renew Canada
P.O. Box 5070 STN LCD
Burlington, Ontario, L7R 3Y8
To arrange an interview about DRS tornado response, call World Renew director, Andrew Ryskamp, at cell 616-498-0816 or call Bill Adams, World Renew DRS director at cell 616-560-2782. Or call World Renew and DRS Communications staff listed above.