UPDATE: Listen to Somebody Cares staffer Casey Smith share an update on the Hurricane Laura Relief effort in this episode of Somebody Care's President and Founder Doug Stringer's podcast, A Word in Season. Somebody Cares America has teams on the ground in southeast Texas and the Lake Charles, Louisiana areas, to serve communities that were devastated by Hurricane Laura.
Newton County, Texas, was hard hit by hurricane-force winds that downed numerous trees across the region. Somebody Cares Jasper-Newton Counties immediately began serving the elderly and others who needed assistance by helping remove trees from rooftops and driveways. Residents are expected to be without electricity for several weeks, which means the many residents who rely on water pumps are without water as well.
Another Somebody Cares team, along with partner Crisis Response International (CRI), has arrived in Sulphur, near the Lake Charles area, to connect with local churches and identify distribution and staging areas. Power is out in this area, as well, and the mayor of Lake Charles reports that water capacity is low after the water plants "took a beating."
Meanwhile, Somebody Cares staff and partners are continuing to procure resources that can be sent in to help, including food, water and cleaning supplies. Partners around the region have supplies ready to ship as soon as staging areas are secured. Somebody Cares has now set up at the hurricane-damaged Celebration Worship Center in Sulfur, Louisiana, and will start serving meals tomorrow. There the nonprofit is partnering with Crisis Response International, its long-term disaster relief partner. The Somebody Cares Holy Smoke grill team is setting up for hot meals for first responders and for residents when they are able to return.
"As always, Somebody Cares seeks to partner with and empower the local church to be a beacon of hope to those who have suffered loss in the storm," says Somebody Cares America founder and president, Doug Stringer. "Nobody knows their community better than the local church."
Somebody Cares can accept donations of the following (in bulk and new items only, please):
—Water (power is out so water pumps are not working).
—Nonperishable food items.
—Large trash bags/contractor bags.
—Roofing nails and felt.
—Five-gallon gas cans.
—Portable phone chargers (charged and ready to use).
—18-inch or larger chainsaws and blades.
Financial donations are also needed to cover the costs for transporting donated materials and purchasing gift cards to assist residents. To make a donation, visit SomebodyCares.org or text to give at 805-422-7301 (801-I-CARE-01). For more information, call 731-621-1498.
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