Because the response is so expansive, the Louisiana Annual Conference Disaster Response Team is reaching out and teaming up with community partners to complete the work as quickly and efficiently as possible. “We asked the question, ‘How can we leverage resources to be successful?,’” said Debra T. Davis, Ph.D., who is serving the Louisiana Conference as the new Disaster Response Director.
As a result, the Conference is partnering with Habitat for Humanity in a campaign known as “Windows, Doors and Floors”
This partnership will spearhead tackling the work in parishes affected by the August floods (East Baton Rouge, Ascension and Livingston parishes). “The Conference disaster response will also partner with Habitat in the Monroe area, which was deeply affected by spring flooding,” said Davis.
Bishop Cynthia Fierro Harvey says loving your neighbor has taken on a whole new meaning in Louisiana. “Creativity is birthed in tension,” she says. “I think we’ve reached some really unique and creative ways of being God’s people. These partnerships allow us to stretch our resources, both financially and human ability, to be able to respond in a way that fundamentally involves other people in the community.”
The Conference response will also team up with the United Way and other partners in the Acadiana area, which suffered devastating damage during to the August flooding event.
According to Davis, in every community that has been affected, long-term recovery groups and organizations sitting around “unmet needs” tables will fill in the “gaps” for folks needing additional help.
“We can do more together. Partnering is the big push everywhere these days because of economics. Disasters abound, and it seems practically every area of the country is dealing with the own devastation.
In the United Methodist Church, we are called to be in partnership with our communities, with other churches and other denominations to make a difference. To serve as the hands and feet of Christ!,” said Davis.
Once clients have been vetted, at each rebuild, the Habitat site supervisor and a construction supervisor will be sure that licenses and permits are applied for and received. Then Habitat will oversee all electrical, plumbing and roofing work. The part completed by United Methodist volunteers will include stabilizing floors, installing floors and windows, and working with sheetrock and insulation. Then Habitat will finishing floating sheetrock, hang cabinets and complete carpentry work. College and youth teams will come in behind to finish painting the refurbished homes.
If you feel compelled to help the Louisiana Conference of the United Methodist Church, please visit our web site: www.LouisianaDisasterResponse.com