By: Amanda Yanchury
Water needs to recede and basements need to be pumped before it is safe for volunteers to arrive to help in the aftermath of the recent flooding in the Duluth area, said Heather Klason, Minnesota conference disaster response coordinator.
“You can’t immediately respond when there is a flood,” Klason said. “We need to ensure it is safe for our volunteers to enter the disaster area.”
Klason expects a disaster response team of 8-10 trained volunteers will be given work orders Friday.
Some 1300 flood buckets filled with supplies will be delivered to Duluth as of June 26 from the Midwest Distribution Center. These kits will be warehoused at a Duluth airport hangar and will be distributed from there. 500 kits were also sent to the Superior, Wisc., area.
Children’s kits from the Dakotas Conference will be received as well—kits that contain books, toys, and note for parents on children and disasters.
Klason notes that a priority for the city has been restoring access in and out of the city due to the damaged roads. Now that it has been restored, the city can shift their priority to cleanup.
Bishop Sally Dyck requested and will be receiving a $10,000 disasters grant from United Methodist Committee on Relief. This is for individual assistance only, and the money will go towards helping people where insurance does not cover damage.
You can help by giving to the conference Disaster Response Team by making donations through your church. These donations help the disaster response team replace much-used equipment. You can also donate money or kits to the Midwest Mission Distribution Center to replace the kits that are on their way to Duluth.
Individuals can also volunteer through United Way of Greater Duluth.
Klason reminds us that no two disasters are alike, and we must respond in accordance to the affected city’s wishes. Please continue to pray for all those affected by this disaster.
Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church