Opportunities to help Louisiana flood victims

August 29, 2016 update: Pam Carter and the Florida Conference have set a challenge for churches to fill a semi-truck at First UMC Lakeland with 1,860 UMCOR cleaning buckets by September 13 for delivery to flood-ravaged Louisiana. Click here to view Hyde Park's response to the challenge.

Over 60,000 homes have been damaged by the disastrous flooding in Louisiana, and Florida Conference church members can help the families in distress.

Bishop Carter invites you to please consider taking a special offering this Sunday to help those affected by the floods in Louisiana. Churches and individuals can send in special offerings using this code: Fund 101190--Louisiana Flood Relief. Churches can include their offering in their regular monthly apportionment payments by including this code on their apportionment giving form.

You may want to use one of the videos on the Louisiana Conference website to help share the need with your church, according to Pam Garrison, the Conference’s Disaster Response Coordinator. All money received will be given directly to the Louisiana Conference, enabling them to use the money when and where it is needed most, she said.

The Conference also invites churches and members to package cleaning bucket kits to be shipped to the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) Sager Brown Depot in Baldwin, La.

The director of Sager Brown reports that as fast as kits are coming in, they are going back out to help those affected by the floods, according to Garrison.

“Because the height of the hurricane season is only a couple of weeks away, the Depot is also concerned about replenishing cleaning buckets in the event of another storm anywhere along the Gulf Coast,” she added.

“If every church in the conference packaged two to three buckets, we could fill a tractor trailer! If every church packaged five or six, we could fill two tractor trailers,” Garrison said.

A link to instructions for packing the buckets, as well as some ideas from Garrison to create momentum around the ministry, are below.

  1. Click here for a list of what goes in the bucket and a video showing how to pack it.

  2. Get creative!

    1. When purchasing supplies, tell retailers what you’re doing and ask for a discount or donation. What a witness!

    2. Have a cleaning bucket packing party. Serve food: We’re Methodists!

    3. Set a church goal and challenge your friends and leaders at other UMCs to get involved.

    4. Bless the buckets at a worship service and pray for the lives they will touch.

    5. People like knowing where the cleaning buckets come from, so put a label with your church name on the outside. Let them know you care.

  3. Drop off your buckets at one of the collection sites by the deadline and the Conference will do the rest.

Click here for the location of collection sites and deadlines for delivering your buckets to the sites.

For questions or more information, contact:

Pam Garrison
Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church
Disaster Recovery Ministry
Office: (800) 282-8011 Ext. 148
Cell: (813) 545-8479

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