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January storms: South Georgia helps neighbors, early response teams needed

1/20/2023

On Thursday, January 12, 2023, severe storms and multiple tornadoes stretched across the Alabama-West Florida and North Georgia Conferences. The South Georgia Conference stands in solidarity with our neighboring conferences, offering prayer and support. 
 
At the request of the North Georgia Conference, the South Georgia Conference has been asked to assist and coordinate the UMC response in Meriwether County. Rev. Glenn Martin, Northwest District Disaster Response coordinator, is taking the lead and is working with the emergency manager and other leaders in the area. 

Rev. Martin led a team from the Northwest District to Greenville, Ga. on Monday, January 16.  The fourteen volunteers were from Wynnton UMC, Pierce Chapel UMC, and Midland UMC. In addition, Dan Henderson, member of Fitzgerald UMC, took a skid steer to assist in moving and collecting debris. They did chainsaw work all day, cutting down and cutting up pine trees and cleaning up debris. Martin took another team later in the week. 
 
The South Georgia Conference shower trailer is being used by the Red Cross shelter in Locust Grove. Blankets were collected by churches in the North Central District, and Luis Morales, Conference Disaster Response Coordinator, delivered to affected areas on Friday, January 20. 
  
Early Response Teams
If you have an ERT who can deploy to an affected area either in Alabama or North Georgia, contact one of the district coordinators or contact Rev. Martin directly. Please do not self-deploy. Our coordinators will help find an area for your team to serve. The primary need right now is debris cleanup and chainsaw work. Even if you are not a chainsaw operator, deploying teams need able bodies to help move/haul rubbish so it can be collected.
 
District Coordinators
Kelly Crane, Coastal District Coordinator
kelcrane@gmail.com or 731-499-0491
 
Glenn Martin, Northwest District Coordinator
gmartin0704@gmail.com or 912-312-6341
 
Susan Hughes, South Central District Coordinator
susanjhughes17@gmail.com or 229-423-9381
 
Thomas Smith, Southwest District Coordinator
tldsmith@icloud.com or 229-686-4046
 
ERT & Chainsaw Operator Safety Training
An ERT & Chainsaw Operator Safety training is set for March 25 at Pierce Chapel UMC (5122 Pierce Chapel Road, Midland GA 31820) beginning at 8am. This training is a collaborative effort of the United Methodist Committee on Relief and United Methodist Volunteers in Mission. Mac Woodridge from Pierce Chapel will serve as the host. Click here to register. For more information, contact Mac Woodridge at macdaddy1977@gmail.com
 
Financial Gifts 
Other ways you can help in addition to your prayers for the survivors and volunteers is with your financial donations. 
 
You can donate through your church to our Conference Advance Special #6796 - South Georgia Storm Relief (Disaster Response). Address: PO Box 7227, Macon, GA 31209  

Online donations: 
Click here to donate online to the South Georgia Conference Storm Relief effort
Click here to donate to UMCOR US Disaster Response & Recovery
 
Thank you for giving! Financial gifts will make a significant impact on any current and future relief and long-term recovery efforts. 
 
For any questions, contact Luis Morales, Conference Disaster Response Coordinator, at morhilll@gmail.com or 478-216-7729.

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