Kentucky Baptist Convention brings relief to Florida: Statewide effort was launched out of Lincoln County
Published 4:00 pm Thursday, October 13, 2022
In the wake of Hurricane Ian, the Kentucky Baptist Convention in collaboration with the American Red Cross gathered a team of nearly 50 volunteers to help provide 25,000 meals a day to victims of the storm. The effort was organized by Ron Crow, the Baptist Convention’s disaster relief director.
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The effort, which includes volunteers from throughout Kentucky, was organized and staged in Lincoln County. Volunteers are providing relief to victims in the city of Wauchula. Crow explained that getting such an effort organized takes a lot of planning.
“It takes quite a bit of organization to make all this happen. It takes a lot of equipment,” Crow said. “When you arrive on site you have to plan for utility hookups like water. You have to place the food orders and have things like cooler space and dry box storage. A lot goes into getting everything set up before you can even begin to cook.”
Crow said that many times after natural disasters even if city water is still functioning, it is not potable. He said that is just one more thing you have to plan for. Fortunately, the area where they are providing aid still has functioning and potable city water, but they came prepared with a tanker truck filled with water on standby.
Crow said that once the cooking begins it takes an organized team working together.
“Everybody has their role, all the way from the head cook that plans the menus and knows the ingredients to the people that keep the pots stirred,” he said. “You need maintenance people to fix things that break. You have your serving line, your delivery people, and we had a team of men helping supply home owners with bottled water. Everybody has a job and they are doing it well.”
Crow said that Wauchula was not hit by flooding, but the heavy rains and strong winds destroyed crops, knocked over trees and damaged homes. The area is on the road to recovery with power beginning to be restored and that restaurants are starting to reopen. He said that he expects his group to stay in the area for a few more weeks to continue providing meals and assist with the cleanup of the area.
“Our response is in 3 stages. Is there work to do? Do we have the volunteers? Do we have the funds? God has blessed with the funds so I’m not concerned about that. I think the need will end before we run out of volunteers. All of our volunteers are called by God. It’s like the ministry of Jesus. There is a physical need that opens the door to help with people’s spiritual needs. It’s why we do what we do,” Crow said.
If you would like to provide a donation to the relief effort or become a volunteer, go to www.kybaptist.org/dr for more information.