Disaster Response Services

World Renew's Disaster Response Services volunteers give of their time and talents to help clear debris, assess needs, and rebuild homes after disasters strike.

Mission Statement

  • To show God’s love and bring hope to disaster-impacted communities in North America by restoring the homes and lives of those who are most vulnerable,

  • To help communities build their capacity to prepare for and recover from disaster, and,

  • To provide opportunities for Christians to honor the Lord by using their time, talents and financial resources in service to others.

World Renew DRS carries out its mission through services at every stage of recovery, in partnership with other organizations and volunteers.


World Renew Disaster Response Services (DRS) responds to disasters in a variety of ways. These include the following and are made possible by volunteers. 

  • Early Assessment - In the days and weeks immediately following a disaster, trained volunteers provide spiritual care to survivors, network with other responding organizations and gather information that will be used to plan longer term support.

  • Rapid Response - This phase of DRS' response addresses the clean-up needs through trained volunteers by mucking out flooded homes, removing downed trees and completing minor repairs after a disaster, especially covering roofs to protect homes from the elements.

  • Unmet Needs assessment - An Unmet Needs Assessment is the process of conducting a community survey to identify those with unmet needs, generally several months after a disaster when the local recovery group is operational and most homeowners know the financial assistance they will be receiving from insurance and the government. This information is then used by the local recovery group to respond to and meet the needs of those in their community.

  • Organizational Capacity Building - This phase of DRS' response provides training and guidance to local recovery groups, equipping them to expand their ability to help disaster survivors over the long term.

  • Reconstruction - When a relationship is built with a local recovery group to such a degree that DRS is invited to set up a long-term reconstruction site, a contract is signed and DRS sends continuous teams of skilled construction volunteers to repair and rebuild homes.

  • Group Mission Trips - Groups of volunteers from churches, schools, families or businesses work with a local recovery group in a disaster affected area doing work from cleanup to reconstruction.

  • Community Development Consultation - Helping local recovery organizations move from disaster response to addressing the long-term needs of their community is the last phase of DRS's work.

  • Construction Estimating - Trained volunteers make personal visits to homes to determine appropriate materials, skills and time required for repair and construction. This information is then provided to the local recovery group to use for planning the recovery process. 

World Renew DRS works in partnership with the National Voluntary Agencies Active in Disasters (National VOAD) and Church World Service (CWS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Periodically, stories of our activities may be seen on the Disaster News Network (DNN).



Getting Started

General Volunteer FAQ's


For the following opportunities, primarily for individuals and couples, fill out this volunteer application at worldrenew.net/drsapp.

Click here to learn about DRS Managed Reconstruction Sites (primarily for individuals and couples, 1-3 weeks at a time)

Click here for Needs Assessment

Click here for Rapid Response (clean-up after a natural disaster)


For Group Mission Trips, visit worldrenew.net/volunteer to see all opportunities. Fill out this short form to get started.

Contact drs@worldrenew.net or 800-848-5818 with any questions.


Monthly Opportunity Link

Click here for a summarized pdf of this month’s most urgent and timely volunteer opportunities | Sign up here to receive this each month via email.


*Background Checks

All volunteers must complete background checks before volunteering. Information is available from our office.


For Churches

DRS Sunday

Find how your church can support disaster survivors. Visit worldrenew.net/drssunday to learn more.

Disaster Preparedness

If a tornado came through your town on a Wednesday night, does your church have a plan for the groups that might be meeting at church that night? Are important documents in a safe place in the event of a flood? Visit worldrenew.net/prepare-disasters for a step-by-step develop a disaster preparedness plan for your church. 

Activities This Month

A summary of planned activities for January 2018.



Regional managers continue to connect with the 2016 fire response throughout the winter.


British Columbia

The area representative for BC continues to connect with the wildfire response efforts to monitor how World Renew can respond to identified needs.



Regional managers once again are work with recovery efforts in Constance Bay regarding the homes damaged by 2017 flooding.





Regional managers are attending planning meetings with communities recovering from recent wildfires in northern California and offering needs assessments. They are also monitoring the fire situation in southern California



A needs assessment is being planned in Immokalee in response to Hurricane Irma. More counties are considering requesting this service. Details are falling into place for multiple local organizations to host World Renew’s week-long groups. Regional managers continue to meet with many community leaders and FEMA representatives from the Keys, to Jacksonville, and across the state. Many counties are developing organized responses.



Seven counties are recovering from Hurricane Irma. Regional managers are meeting with local leaders to see how World Renew can assist.



The new DRS-managed reconstruction site in Hammond is being set up this month and volunteers begin home repairs on January 20. This is in response to 2016 flooding.  


North Carolina

The long-term reconstruction site in Tarboro, in response to Hurricane Matthew of October 2016, reopens this month. There are three one-week groups in Washington or Tarboro this month.


Puerto Rico

Regional managers are in Puerto Rico this month to work out many details in preparation for the first World Renew reconstruction team arriving in February. This is in response to Hurricane Maria.


South Carolina

The DRS-facilitated site in Manning is open for the third time. There are four one-week groups serving at this site this month.



Hurricane Harvey: A new DRS-facilitated reconstruction site opens in Port Arthur this month and will run through April; there are five one-week groups at this site this month. The first needs assessment in response to Harvey is taking place in Brazoria County. Many more requests are expected. Regional managers continue to meet with community leaders and FEMA representatives across the entire damage area. Many counties are developing organized responses. 2015 Flooding: The DRS-managed reconstruction sites in San Marcos and Rio Grande Valley closed for the holidays and are resuming work this month. Both sites will run through spring.


West Virginia

There is a one-week group in Rainelle this month repairing a home damaged by 2016 flooding.


Click here for resources for World Renew DRS.

Find World Renew's Annual Report at worldrenew.net/ministryreport.


For questions on volunteering, donating, or our services, feel free to
contact World Renew DRS staff at drs@worldrenew.net or 800-848-5818.