Iris Relief- Florida

What kind of disaster happened? Hurricane Michael Who was impacted? Florida, Georgia, East Coast Where are we deploying? Panama City, Florida Dates of deployment? November 19th- 21st, 2018

November 19- 21, 2018 Our Iris Relief disaster response team arrived in Panama City and immediately were thrusted into disaster upon looking at the destruction from the landfall of Hurricane Michael. Many homes were destroyed, businesses and supermarkets were without roofs, and churches closed for worship services. In the midst of this darkness, we found light. A beautiful Catholic church located in Springfield, just East of Panama City named St. Dominic’s Catholic Church, opened up it’s doors, hearts, and parking lot to help those in need. With a distribution center started within 48 hours after the storm, many found a refuge in receiving canned goods, cleaning kits, and a warm smile as they drove through the lines. This distribution center served on average 6,000 people daily with supplies, and served around 10,000 hot meals every day.

We partnered with Trusted World and Rick Caywood Ministries to provide a full 18 wheeler with supplies to restock this distribution center. Pallets and pallets of food, water, and other items were dispersed to many in need. One particular item given was a water filtration system that provides clean water for over a year to a family. Many are still without the necessities over a month since the storm. Our team also had the opportunity to disperse Watts of Love solar powered lights to individuals who did not have electricity, or a home at all.

Our team stayed at Dogwood Acres Presbyterian Camp, just 40 minutes north of the coast of Florida. Although they were more inland, there was still a significant amount of damage to the 450 acres, and the surrounding neighborhoods.

We are so thankful to partner with such great organizations who have a heart to love those in need, expressed in many different ways. Giving a cup of water, a mop, boxes of food, serving a hot meal, or bagging oranges can truly save a life and give hope. We encourage everyone to be involved in recovery efforts, in some way.

CATEGORY OF DEPLOYMENT & PRACTICAL RESPONSE Crisis Response

  • Set up/ assist with distribution center to provide essential resources: food, water, hygiene kits, toiletries, gas cans, baby needs, miscellaneous items, gatorade, cleaning supplies, water filtration systems provided by ‘Just Water’ etc.
  • Distribute Solar powered lights to those in need of electricity provided by ‘Watts of Love’. Serve Thanksgiving Day meal items to local families.

Chaplaincy

  • Deploy Disaster Spiritual Care teams to bring hope, love, and life through practical listening, praying, and processing.

OUR PARTNERS - Watts of Love, Florida Voad, FEMA, Trusted World, Global Samaritan Resources, LOWES, Caywood Ministries, Saint Dominic’s Catholic Church, Catholic Charities.