~Captain Ted Tressler, The Salvation Army of Reading
As hurricane Irma formed and grew in the southern Atlantic, discussions began regarding how The Salvation Army would respond, given the potential storm path, the anticipated impact and the potential needs to be met. It was determined on Labor Day that two teams of two responders would be pre-positioned in the U.S. Virgin Islands. One team would go to St. Thomas and one would go to St. Croix, locations covered by The Salvation Army USA Eastern Territory that were most likely to be affected.
I was selected as a team member because of my extensive experience in serving the victims of natural disasters, my administrative and logistics expertise, as well as my professional training in pastoral, emotional and spiritual care. I was assigned to St. Croix. Upon arrival we immediately made an assessment of local resources and potential needs. We prepared by purchasing enough food, supplies and water to meet the needs of 200 individuals for 4 days, at which time additional local resources or outside resources should be available. Continue reading “Recovering from Hurricane Irma in the U.S. Virgin Islands: A Salvation Army Officer’s Experience on the Front Lines”
No One is Forgotten
~Captain Tawny Cowen-Zanders, Public Information Officer, Naples Incident Command
When you still have critical needs more than a week after the storm has passed, when you feel like you’re one of the last ones to have your power restored, and when you feel like the last one to be asked “how are you doing,” you grow used to feeling forgotten. So, when you hear the sound of a utility terrain vehicle (UTV) making its way down your narrow street, which is partially hidden by tree branches and lined with deep holes, you are surprised – very surprised. Continue reading “Reaching the Unreachable”
In the wake of Hurricane Irma, The Salvation Army of Eastern Pennsylvania & Delaware’s Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) is sending aid to Florida in the form of disaster relief equipment and a team of local disaster relief responders. Four food and hydration mobile feeding units and a crew of eleven EDS staff and volunteers departed from Philadelphia on Tuesday morning, September 12. An additional six EDS staff members are deploying today, September 13, to provide command and leadership support to other Salvation Army EDS crews that are currently on site in Florida, as well as crews who are arriving from across the nation. The local EDS teams and equipment plan to be in Florida for approximately 14 days. Hurricane season 2017 is The Salvation Army’s largest natural disaster response to date. Continue reading “The Salvation Army of Eastern PA & DE Deploys to Florida for Hurricane Irma Relief (Photos & Video)”