Two teams of Children’s Disaster Services (CDS) volunteers have begun work in Baton Rouge, La., this week, and more teams have been requested to help care for children and families who have been displaced by massive flooding.
In related news, the Church of the Brethren’s Material Resources program shipped relief supplies to southern Louisiana today, on behalf of Church World Service (CWS). The shipment will arrive in Louisiana on Monday, Aug. 22. It consisted of 500 clean-up buckets, 20 cartons of school kits, and 100 cartons of hygiene kits. The Material Resources processes, warehouses, and ships relief goods, based at the Brethren Service Center in New Windsor, Md.
CDS teams work in Baton Rouge
In mid-week, CDS associate director Kathy Fry-Miller reported, “There are 10,000 people in shelters, some with 3,000 people. There are many road closures, so transportation is very difficult for residents, as well as for assistance and relief to get into the area, both volunteers and supplies.”
Today, Fry-Miller reported by e-mail that in their first day and a half in Louisiana, the CDS volunteers cared for 60 children. The American Red Cross is requesting two more CDS teams to travel to Louisiana this weekend.
Wanda King of Bear Creek Church of the Brethren in Dayton, Ohio, is serving as project manager. The CDS team currently in Baton Rouge includes nine trained and certified CDS volunteers. The team is serving in a large shelter housing more than 1,000 people. The shelter is made up of smaller living areas, so the team has set up children’s centers in two different locations, each staffed by four caregivers.
The team is housed at First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Baton Rouge. “This is especially meaningful since Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is funding our CDS Gulf Coast Expansion Project,” Fry-Miller noted. “What wonderful partners we have in this work!”
For more information about the ministry of Children’s Disaster Services go to www.brethren.org/cds .