United Methodist Committee on Relief

UMCOR Responds to Disasters Around the World in 2017

In the wake of recent disasters in the United States and abroad, the United Methodist Committee On Relief (UMCOR) is working to fulfill unmet food, clean water, temporary shelter, hygiene supplies, and non-food item needs. UMCOR's work starts when search and rescue operations for survivors is over. We accompany communities in their long-term recovery. UMCOR works with Conference Disaster Response Coordinators (CDRC) to assess needs and to design and implement disaster response activities.


Puerto Rico - U.S. Territory 

UMCOR has awarded a $110,000 emergency grant to the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico (MCPR), inclusive of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands Additional funding is in development. MCPR leadership has met with UMCOR Director of U.S. Disaster Response, Cathy Earl, for program development activities. An UMCOR advance team consisting of people experienced in logistics, communications, construction, volunteer management and case management has been deployed to Puerto Rico. With the MCPR they are visiting affected communities and distribution centers in order to assess needs and determine a collaborative approach to undergird MCPR’s efforts, including the distribution of supplies and the deployment of Early Response Teams and Volunteer in Mission teams. MCPR leaders are asking volunteers to refrain from traveling to Puerto Rico until asked.
Learn more about UMCOR’s work with MCPR.
 California  UMCOR awarded a $10,000 emergency grant at the request of Bishop Minerva Carcaño for direct assistance. The California-Nevada Annual Conference is developing plans for a recovery program in partnership with UMCOR. Cathy Earl, UMCOR Director of U.S. Disaster Response, is in communication to offer support and additional resources for recovery efforts. An UMCOR representative will be in Santa Rosa, California, from December 1-3, 2017, to facilitate conversations about disaster recovery ministry options with United Methodists from churches in the four impacted counties.

Sierra Leone   In immediate response to the tragic mudslide in Sierra Leone, UMCOR awarded a grant of $10,000 to The United Methodist Church of Sierra Leone for emergency provision of food, medical services, and assessment of needs. Today, UMCOR is working with Sierra Leone Annual Conference to provide tents, water filters, water containers, bedding, and hygiene kits for displaced families.
Texas UMCOR awarded a $1,000,000 emergency grant to Texas Annual Conference, and also awarded a $816,418 emergency grant to the Rio Texas Annual Conference to assist with Hurricane Harvey recovery projects. Churches within the conferences continue to respond to the damages caused by the hurricane as they muck out houses and begin steps to rebuild. Both conferences are preparing to hire and train disaster case managers in moving forward with recovery.
Learn how you can help:

Louisiana UMCOR has awarded a $500,000 emergency grant to the Louisiana Annual Conference for recovery projects. Through UMCOR funding, three disaster case managers, a project manager, and a data specialist were trained at Lake Charles, Louisiana. At least 375 families have asked for assistance in the Lake Charles area. A Long-Term Recovery Group is meeting with the Louisiana Annual Conference to address long-term recovery and unmet needs.
Learn how you can volunteer:

Florida UMCOR awarded a $1,000,000 emergency grant to the Florida Annual Conference in support of their recovery process from Hurricane Irma. Over the next three to six months, assembled teams from Florida Annual Conference will begin recovery projects in five regions in Florida.
Learn how you can help:

Georgia UMCOR awarded a $10,000 emergency grant to the South Georgia Annual Conference to enable them to respond to urgent needs of those affected by Hurricane Irma.

South Carolina To address damages caused by Hurricane Irma, the South Carolina Conference organized assessment teams to develop recovery programming. UMCOR is awaiting completed assessments and is ready to offer support as needed.  

U.S. Territories The Methodist Church of Puerto is assessing needs of those within the community of their church on St. Croix (USVI).
Non-U.S. Territories  UMCOR is communicating with its partners in the Caribbean and awaiting an assessment from them to provide effective relief to those affected by hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Mexico Devastating earthquakes in Mexico killed at least 320 and caused widespread damage to homes, hospitals, and government infrastructure. UMCOR is in communication with the local Methodist Church and is ready to respond to partners’ requests for relief and recovery assistance. Global Ministries two missionaries, Hector LaPorta and Amanda Cherry, are serving in Mexico City, Mexico. Both reported they are safe and accounted for. Though the impact of the earthquake was widespread in Mexico City, the neighborhoods where they live were not as heavily damaged as others in the city. Both missionaries are actively working with volunteers from the Methodist Church and from local universities to assist with clean up and assessment. The community is in great need of pastoral support as many people have died because of the earthquake. There is also need for housing, food, and non-food items for families who have lost their homes.        

Learn more about UMCOR's response to current disasters:

Learn how you and your church can respond to current disasters and support UMCOR’s efforts.

UMCOR in the news: 

Wall Street Journal Advertisement 

USA Today Article 

CNN’s Charitable List – Impact Your World

The Washington Times Article

United Methodist News Service – “Churches helping one bucket at a time”

Times News - Kingsport Tennessee Article

Cape May County Herald Article

Gulf Breeze News Article

Sun Community News Article

United Methodist News Service - "UMCOR is there for the long haul"


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