The recent devastation in south Texas calls for us as Christians to respond to those in need. This tragedy will affect lives for years to come. At BridgeWay, we are suggesting the following four options for you to as you pray over how to assist:

1.      Financial contributions to Samaritan’s Purse. This is the organization led by Franklin Graham, and they are experts in disaster relief. This Christian group has spearheaded operations in many different relief settings, and they are careful stewards of how monies are spent. You can donate to Samaritan’s Purse by giving your check to BridgeWay Church and marking it for ‘hurricane relief’ or by donating online here or use your BridgeWay app and select the fund for hurricane relief.

2.      Volunteering in south Texas through Samaritan’s Purse. Disaster relief units and staff are already in Texas and preparing to enter areas of devastation just as soon as floodwaters recede and they can get to people’s homes. Please see details below about ways in which you can volunteer. (for more detailed information, please go to the Samaritan’s Purse website.

Location: Victoria, TX & Rockport/Portland, TX
There are opportunities for both volunteers who need overnight accommodations and those who want to serve for the day.

Length of Stay: Minimum stay of three days for overnight volunteers.

Maximum Team Size: Fifteen people. Both teams and individuals are welcome.

Minimum Age: Volunteers must be at least 14 years or older. Youth, ages 14-15, must be accompanied by their parent/legal guardian and youth, ages 16-17, must be accompanied by an adult chaperone (age 21 or older). All youth must have a signed Youth Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liabilty. If not accompanied by their parent, this form must be notarized.

Project Description: Volunteers will be assisting homeowners affected by Hurricane Harvey.  We’ll be tearing out damaged drywall, removing flooring, tarping roofs, and clearing debris.

Background Information: Two Samaritan’s Purse disaster relief units are now in Texas to help residents as they continue to struggle with rain, flooding, and destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey. Soon we will have a total of five of these tractor trailers in the state, setting up volunteer bases around Victoria, Rockport/Portland, Galveston/Santa Fe, and two in Houston.
Additional Information: Meals and sleeping quarters will be provided for overnight volunteers. Volunteers need to bring twin size air mattress or cot, linens/sleeping bag, pillow, towels and personal hygiene items. Tools will be provided, but volunteers may bring their own tool belts and small hand tools. Volunteers should dress in long pants and bring work gloves, safety glasses, and sturdy boots.  Volunteers should bring rubber boots for working in flooded areas.

Local / Day Volunteers: If you are local to the area or do not need overnight accommodations we welcome you to serve for the day. Please arrive at our host church at 7:30am or 12:30pm for orientation.  We will pair you with an experienced team leader to go out to work. Please bring a bagged lunch and water with you. Volunteers will work Mondays – Saturdays and some Sunday afternoons.

Current sites for Day Volunteers:
Faith Family Church, 2002 E Mockingbird Lane, Victoria, TX 77904  Phone: 361-484-5437 Beginning: Tuesday, August 29
First Baptist Church, 1305 Wildcat Drive, Portland, TX 78374  Phone: 361-445-2645        Beginning: Wednesday, August 30

3.      Donating Supplies
Trusted World is collecting supplies for the Red Cross and then distributing them to the shelters in the area. The donation site located at 15660 Dallas Parkway, Dallas. Its collection hours are from 9 a.m. to 7p.m. Monday thru Friday. Trusted World says it will take in all items but more importantly it is in need of a warehouse to put overflow supplies at this time. The response has been tremendous in the DFW area.

4.      Volunteering in Dallas
To see what volunteers are needed in the Shelters in the DFW area, you can visit: http://www.redcross.org/volunteer/become-a-volunteer#step1

Trusted World (the designated drop off location in Dallas) can use volunteers who can help sort supplies and help unload the donations from the cars as they arrive. You simply show up to the site at 15660 Dallas Parkway, Dallas and offer assistance. Yesterday, a group from BridgeWay took donations to this located and decided to stay and help sort supplies and unload the cars in line.