Week of Compassion Update on Hurricane Florence - Friday, Sept. 14, 2pm EDT
Hurricane Florence continues to devastate the mid-Atlantic coast. Rain-bands and tropical storm force winds began hitting the central North Carolina coast on Thursday afternoon, and the hurricane came ashore around 7:15 a.m. this morning with winds of 90 m.p.h. Since then, it has moved slowly inland and is predicted to continue to bring torrential rains to the region over the next few days and then turn slowly northward. Storm surges of over 10 feet have already caused flooding along the coast and inland along rivers, with the areas of New Bern, Belhaven, and Morehead City particularly hard hit. River flooding is a continuing threat across the Carolinas and into Virginia, with rain rates over 1” per hour in some areas. News sources are reporting more than 150 New Bern residents trapped in their homes, more than 500,000 people without power, and 20,000 people in emergency shelters -- with those numbers expected to increase.
The current and projected impact zones include several hundred Disciples congregations, including nearly two-hundred in areas at risk of significant damage. Many of these areas are still recovering from the widespread flooding caused by Hurricane Matthew in October, 2016.
Week of Compassion is partnering across our Disciples community and with ecumenical partners to respond in many ways to the tremendous need.
Christmount Conference Center is hosting over 90 evacuees.
Congregations in multiple states have offered their buildings as shelter for evacuees.
Southwood Memorial Christian Church in Kinston, NC is working with local emergency management to host a mobile medical center on their campus.
The Regional Office in North Carolina has been coordinating with congregations to preposition clean-up supplies and identify local resources.
Our ecumencial partner, Children’s Disaster Services, has teams on standby to provide childcare in shelters, as requested in North and South Carolina.
Week of Compassion has also made available worship resources for this Sunday in response to Hurricane Florence; you can find those here.
UPDATE on Super Typhoon Mangkhut
As we monitor Hurricane Florence, we also pray for our siblings in the Pacific. Equivalent to a Category 5 hurricane, Super Typhoon Manghkut is already thrashing the northern islands of the Philippines, with the landfall of the eye predicted for later today. Week of Compassion is in communication with our partners in the Philippines and China and will respond as needed.
You can help.
Please give generously to Week of Compassion as we support our congregations and families, as we work through our partners to provide immediate relief to those affected by these storms, and as we prepare to support communities through the long road of recovery. You may designate your gift online or by check for “Hurricane Relief,” and 100% of your gift will go to help affected communities.