Southern Baptist Disaster Relief (SBDR) leaders have established several sites in the Midwest to respond to historic flooding that has created at least $3 billion in damages in recent weeks.
“As soon as I got in the airplane and flew back home,” said Sam Porter, national director of disaster relief with the North American Mission Board (NAMB), “it was stunning to see the farmland that still has floodwater on it. The river is back within its banks, but the land is so flat that there is still water trapped within thousands of acres.”
Porter traveled in and around Nebraska for several days as state SBDR leaders organized and formed their strategy. So far, SBDR has five sites that are operational with the expectation that more will be needed in the near future.
“There were record levels of snowfall in Minnesota and Wisconsin, and much of that has yet to thaw,” explained Porter. “The lakes in Minnesota are also still frozen. So, we’re expecting further flooding of the region.
“We are far from being close to finished with this flood.”
Whether from the runoff from melting snow or expected rainfall, Porter anticipates that Southern Baptists will need to broaden the scope of the response. Volunteers need to “stay tuned,” he said, and churches need to continue praying for the region.
SBDR has assessed homes in Nebraska and Kansas and have identified more than 2,000 flood-affected homes, and SBDR leadership expects a long deployment to provide relief for as many of those homeowners as possible.
Volunteers in Iowa have begun the “mud-out” process of removing muck, damaged furniture and storm debris that has filled homes, cleaning roughly 20 homes in Sioux City.
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Source: Baptist Press