So far I have written almost exclusively about World Vision‘s work overseas. Yet, they do a lot of work in the US as well. It isn’t necessarily what they are known for but they do provide support to families living in poverty in certain parts of the country. And when disaster strikes they have been seen on the ground pulling their volunteers and staff in to service.
Following the devestation known as Hurricane Katrina, World Vision “distributed $10.2 million worth of donated goods and $6.1 million in grants to local churches and organizations,” according to this report. As I am writing this Hurricane Gustav is still wreaking its havoc on the southern coast and World Vision was poised beforehand to be able to provide immediate support.
“We’re in full preparation mode here,” said Audrey Black, manager of World Vision’s Storehouse in Picayune, Mississippi, some 50 miles from New Orleans. “We have been seeing long lines at gas stations and stores as people stock up on necessities—but not everyone can afford to stock up. World Vision’s priority is to make sure we’re ready to help the region’s low-income and forgotten populations.”
World Vision, which serves children and families in need both in the U.S. and in some 100 countries worldwide, responded to Hurricane Katrina by distributing $10.2 million worth of donated goods and $6.1 million in grants to local churches and organizations helping struggling and vulnerable families recover and rebuild.
Based on the storm’s path and the need in affected areas, the agency is ready to ship several truckloads of drinking water, bedding, personal hygiene items, children’s and adults’ clothing and toys from its Storehouses in Dallas and Los Angeles, along with cleaning supplies, face mask filters, vinyl gloves, shovels and tools, and building materials for the clean-up and recovery phase. The supplies, donated by World Vision’s corporate partners, including Unilever and Lagasse, would be distributed through partner organizations to families in need.
“We’re hoping and praying that Gustav spares the Gulf Coast—but we know from experience that we have to be ready for a worst-case scenario,” explained Pettit, whose team has been actively coordinating with regional authorities and other members of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (VOAD) in preparation for the storm’s landfall.
Pettit cautioned that low-income families who evacuate could face additional challenges as the school year starts: “We learned from Katrina; too many impoverished communities simply fall through the cracks,” he said, “For example, children will need school supplies and help in enrolling in a new location if their families evacuate for any significant length of time.”
World Vision has been warning for weeks that its school supply donations are not keeping pace with increased demand this year, as a weak U.S. economy makes back-to-school shopping a luxury for many struggling families.
Your donation today can have an impact on the US as well as for my African friends.
Team World Vision
Team World Vision is a fund raising arm of the organization which uses ordinary people like me, to get ordinary people like you involved in ending poverty and injustice across the world. I have decided to commit the 26.2 miles of my first marathon to the memory of and in honor of the children I have met during my international travels. I can’t remember all of their names, but I have many pictures and stories.
On the right side of my blog there is a widget that will allow you to support me during this race or you can visit this secure page. I have set a goal of raising $2,000 which will help children have a chance at living to become adults across Africa.
[tags] World Vision, Team World Vision, Hurricane, Relief, Gustav [/tags]