Final Summary: The first out-of-state response for South Carolina Baptist Disaster Relief in 2021 was to the flooding in eastern Kentucky. At the request of Kentucky Baptist DR, we ran a command post site for mud-out in a highly impoverished former coal-mining area, Floyd County. The response lasted three weeks, with 53 SCBC DR volunteers participating.
As always, the Disaster Relief ministry includes spiritual and emotional care in addition to the physical help we provide. Team members and chaplains listened to homeowners’ stories, prayed with them, spoke of how Jesus offers hope in the midst of crisis, and shared the gospel. Two people accepted Christ as Savior as a result! The picture below is from the baptism of a teenager in the pool of the hotel where she and her family were staying while their home was being worked on.
Our teams worked closely with Southern Baptist missionary John Morris of “God’s Appalachian Partnership” (GAP). Rather than the housing and command post being in a church, volunteers stayed in a lodge and houses provided by GAP, with the command post office in a local community center.
Mud-out units, assessors, and chaplains worked in homes and had contact with the homeowners. Making that work possible were the behind-the-scenes volunteers: cooks, shower/laundry, and incident management volunteers. Because of the lodging arrangements, we did not pull shower/laundry or feeding units to the site. Our volunteers worked with the kitchen, showers, and washer/dryers in the lodge.
Missionary Morris is arranging for church mission trip teams to do rebuild work on the houses where we did mud-out jobs. Pray for him and for the volunteer teams as they continue to minister in Floyd County, Ky.
Site Statistical Summary:
- 346 Volunteer days
- 2,860 Volunteer hours
- 2 Salvations
- 12 Gospel presentations
- 327 Chaplaincy & ministry contacts
- 47 Bibles distributed
- 32 Mud-out jobs completed
- 106 Assessments
- 789 Meals prepared
- 275 Showers
- 136 Laundry loads