Florence Update

DOM’s, Team Leaders and Secretaries,

I just wanted to give everyone a quick update on what is happening and where we are at.

Currently we have the Sullivan Baptist Association feeding unit on standby.  On the phone call this afternoon, they are trying to get permission to activate 4 more feeding units, but ARC must get approval for these sites.  We do not know if we will be one of those additional units they will ask to come in. Continue reading

Preparation for Hurricane Florence

Projected path of Hurricane Florence, as of Sunday.
-Image: NOAA

DOMs, Team Leaders and Secretaries,

If you have been watching the news, you know that the East Coast is bracing for the possibility of Hurricane Florence hitting the coast really hard.

In light of this, I am asking all team leaders to put your volunteers on ALERT for possible deployment after the storm passes.  From what they are saying we many need all types of teams from Feeding, Chainsaw, Flood Recovery, Chaplains, Assessment, Shower, Laundry to Incident Command. Continue reading

40th Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief Anniversary Video

We want to personally thank each of you who were able to come and celebrate the 40th Anniversary celebration on July 14 at the Missions Mobilization Center in Mount Juliet. The MMC itself is a testimony to God’s working through long-time TBDR volunteers Don and Ann Davis and their desire to see TBDR flourish well into the future.

We had a good time of fellowship and heard from different volunteers and two of the former directors talk about the past, the present, and those who represent the future of Disaster Relief.  After lunch, we had a mix of music, testimonies, and a word of encouragement and challenge from Dr. Randy Davis, President and Executive-Director of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.


Teams Continue to Respond in the Aftermath of Maria

Aerial view of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, Sep. 2017.
-Photo: U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Disaster Relief teams from Tennessee continue to respond in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in the Caribbean.

Teams continue to go and do rebuilding in Puerto Rico, fixing up homes and churches.

Teams going to Dominica continue to work on devastated homes, putting on roofs and helping to rebuild structures. Gifts and teams have helped set up a block plant in the La Plaine section of the island.  Continue reading

Flood Recovery in Maryland

National Atlas – Public Domain

Team Leaders, Secretaries and DOMs,

We received notification Sunday that they need Flood Recovery teams in Maryland in response to the flooding that happened about 3 weeks ago.  If you can put together a team to go, please contact George Blevins at the address listed below and also copy Elizabeth eholmes@tnbaptist.org and myself wjones@tnbaptist.org.

We do not have a Formstack link as of yet, but you should be able to find it on the dropdown menu when you go into FormStack.

Here is what I received yesterday:

As a result of flooding in the Baltimore area a few weeks ago, the response has grown so that the request is now being made nationwide to the DR network for assistance.

Baltimore County has asked that 400 homes be assessed in addition to what the IC already had to do.

Current team needs:

  • IC team members
  • Assessors
  • Flood recovery teams

Please contact George Blevins directly to schedule available teams.

George Blevins:
(443) 271-4004


Report From Connecticut

National Atlas – Public Domain

Below is the first report from Team 7 now in Southbury, CT. Please keep them high on your prayer list.

Connecticut Team 7 is Led by Jack Thrall and includes: Ray Vanyo and Amy Jones (this is their second trip to CT) along with Brock and Kathy Henry of Jefferson County.

Hello From Conn.,

Good morning Tennessee friends, we are just getting ready to deploy out to a home where the lady has been trapped inside for 30 days. They found her yesterday she is fine but there are holes in the roof with trees down everywhere. We have about three teams going to this house and are going to try to finish it today to get semblance of relief.

We are going to another location where we are going to present the gospel to the homeowner and her child. Please pray for us that she will except Jesus if she doesn’t know him already. We’re supposed to have rain most of the day today so pray that we have light rain that we can work and if nothing else. Thank you all for the prayers that you have offered up already and for our safety.

This area doesn’t have much flat ground but it’s not steep like it is in East Tennessee so our skid steer people have An advantage in that they’ve already worked in this kind of terrain.

We will let you know this evening how this day transpires.

Jack Thrall
Crew Chief
Conn. Team 7

East Tenn. DR Team Goes Above and Beyond

From Baptist & Reflector

The members of a DR team from East Tennessee salute the flag at the home of Army veteran Myron Havrilchak. (Contributed photo)

SOUTHBURY, Conn. — Myron Havrilchak, a resident of Southbury, Conn., was among the thousands of homeowners who saw their houses and property substantially damaged by the tornadoes that recently swept through the area.

And yet, when the members of the Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief team arrived at the Havrilchak residence on May 26, they quickly realized Havrilchak had something on his mind that meant more to him than brick and mortar.

Havrilchak is a veteran of the US Army, and he proudly flies a flag in his backyard. But the storms had destroyed his flagpole, and the 86-year-old Havrilchak, having the heart of a solider, was focused on rectifying the problem.

“When we got to his house, he was more concerned about not being able to properly celebrate Memorial Day (which was two days away) than he was about the trees in his yard,” said Larry Sharp, a member of the DR team from East Tennessee that was deployed in Connecticut. “So, we went to a hardware store, we purchased a piece of pipe, took it back to his house and drove it in the ground.” Continue reading

Tennessee DR Teams Asked to Mobilize for New England

National Atlas – Public Domain

From Baptist & Reflector

FRANKLIN — Tennessee Baptist Disaster Relief teams are being asked to mobilize for relief work efforts in Connecticut after tornadoes swept through New England last week.

The line of storms, which included two EF-1 tornadoes, caused severe damage to several towns in Southwest Connecticut. The storms destroyed roughly 200 homes and damaged about 800 more.

New England DR teams are working quickly to mobilize, but are in need of assistance. Tennessee DR teams are being asked to mobilize, if possible, to help in the following areas: Continue reading

Call-Out: Illinois Flood Recovery

Team Leaders and DOMs,

Photo: Illinois Department of Public Health

We have received a call-out for Flood Recovery teams to go to Illinois. If you can put together a team and want to respond, please let me know as soon as possible before contacting Illinois.

Here is a copy of what Dwain sent us today…..

We need help in Illinois with flood response.  As I sat in the Incident Command center while teams returned from a beautiful day of work here in Iroquois County, I was thankful that the weather had warmed up enough for our foggers to work. IC leadership informed me that they received another new 70 jobs from the county. This brings our total number of requests to 256. We have completed 57 homes so far which leaves us at 199 homes waiting to be cleared.

It is early in the season and we are in need of help. If you have Flood Recovery teams, this is our main need. If you are able to send teams please contact me, or the Off-Site Coordinator. Karissa is coordinating the numbers of teams over the next weeks. We are hopeful that we can finish up in three to four weeks if we can get the hands to help.

Incident Command and Housing
Cornerstone Ministries
200 Half St
Woodland, IL 60974
IC Phone: (217) 622-5101

Offsite Coordinator – Will send you the FormStack for this callout.
Carissa Howell
(618) 687-4126

IC White Cap
Jim Weickersheimmer
State Disaster Relief Director

In Christ Serving Together,
Wes Jones

Hurricane Response Update & a Note From a Relief Worker

Team Leaders, Secretaries and DOMs,

Harvey – we continue to have teams in Texas doing Flood Recovery. They are looking for two small feeding teams for next week to cook for volunteers (4-6). If you have a feeding team interested, let me know ASAP. They continue to close sites and move manpower where they work is still needed. Rebuild teams are now being scheduled.

Irma – We have a mixed group of team leaders in FL this week assisting with teams coming in. Pray for a great week of work for all involved.

Maria – Our team continues to work through some of the adverse conditions. Pray for continued strength. One team member had a mishap on Saturday, please pray for him. Below is a note I received from the team today to let you know some of the things they have been doing. Continue reading