2011 Tornado Storm Damage and Response

FEMA has asked Adventist Community Services/Disaster Response (ACS/DR) to manage a warehouse in the Tuscaloosa, AL area for at least the next six months, with the possibility of continuing the operation through April 2012.

“We will be part of the long-term recovery by managing this warehouse for the donated goods that will be needed for rebuilding,” says Barbara Barnes, one of the Adventist ACS/DR directors for the South Central Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, which is overseeing the operation.

The warehouse is accepting large donations from companies and organizations making donations through FEMA and the state of Alabama using the aidmatrix system, a supply chain management system that connects donors and donated goods with the needs in the affected area. The donations sent to the warehouse will supply distribution centers in the outlying counties.

This long-term commitment to provide aid to the affected residents re-enforces the Adventists’ tradition of care for not just individuals’ short term needs, but also their long term needs.

“The people need us,” says Barnes. “It comes back to our mission, that we are serving those that are hurting, and people will be hurting for months and years to come.”

ACS/DR is also operating several other warehouses and distribution centers throughout the affected areas, including Huntsville, AL; Birmingham, AL; Cullman, AL, and Cleveland, TN as well as providing other assistance as requested by local officials. ACS/DR officials are also working on providing mobile distribution in Smithville, MS, and Hackleburg and Geiger, AL.

As recovery efforts continue, ACS/DR officials are continuing to work with FEMA and state and local officials in providing assistance as needed.

“When you help somebody that is in need, they remember that,” says Barnes. “We don’t just need to hand out a loaf of bread and pat our selves on the back and go about our daily lives. People are still hurting, and wherever we can help, we need to help.”

For more information on how ACS/DR, members, and churches are responding to help the affected people, or to learn how these storms have impacted members and churches, click here.

To make a monetary donation, or for instructions on preparing personal care kits for tornado victims, visit the secure website, www.communityservices.org.