Disasters create opportunities for us to help our neighbors, and the disasters of 2018 have been doing just that. Hurricane Florence flooded the Carolinas, and we have seen people come from all over the states to help. Nichols, one of several little towns flooded for the second time in two years, was helped by the outreach efforts of Mullins Presbyterian Church, who opened up their hearts and doors to the many volunteers who came to help through MNA Disaster Response efforts.
Within weeks, Hurricane Michael left the Florida gulf coast near Panama City devastated. Its beautiful trees were stripped and toppled, bringing down countless fences and power lines. Over the past three months, work has been focused on debris removal and helping church members with home repair and Sheds of Hope. Opportunities are open to help in this effort as we move into 2019. A long term staging area has now been established at First Presbyterian Church to help in and around the area.
During my last trip to Mullins, South Carolina, while I was working with RUF students from the University of Kentucky, an exciting suggestion was made. Why not build Sheds of Hope at their Summer Conference? It is held in May at Panama City Beach, just 20 miles from our new staging area. Providentially, our temporary disaster response staging area in Florida has been generously hosted by Laguna Beach Christian Retreat, which is home to the RUF Summer Conference each year.
Plans are moving forward! During the RUF Summer Conference, we hope to build 18 Sheds of Hope with students from all over the country as they donate time from their vacation to help the people of Panama City. (They might even catch a glimpse of the Wee Helper in the process!)
With a goal of building 18 Sheds of Hope during the May Summer Conference, we will need your help! To give toward the cost of building these Sheds of Hope for Panama City this May, you can donate online to the MNA DR Sheds of Hope Ministry Fund This link takes you directly to the account that covers shed materials and supplies. Cost to build a Shed of Hope for a family is $1,100 (gifts are tax-deductible).
Meet me in Panama City during December 8–21 to help set-up Sheds of Hope for families. MNA Disaster Response is getting requests for Sheds of Hope from all three of our PCA churches in the Panama City area.
- Covenant Presbyterian Church — request for 6 more
- First Presbyterian Church — request for 4 more
- Panama City Korean Church — request for 18 more
We have 22 sheds pre-built and ready for set-up between Saturday, December 8th and Friday, December 21st. So far, we have set-up 8 pre-built Sheds of Hope in the area, but are in need of individuals who can come specifically to help set-up another 22 before Christmas. If you can join me with this blitz-build during December 8–21, you would be very welcome. No tools or skills required, just a willingness to serve and help these families.
It takes less than 3 hours to LEARN how to set-up a Shed of Hope.
After setting up their first one, a small group of 6 to 8 people can set-up about 2–3 Sheds of Hope in a day depending on location.
If you know someone who might be able to help — send them a link to this blog so that they can come and help us. Click here to sign-up with MNA if you can come help. State that you want to work on Sheds of Hope Builds. PLEASE NOTE: ALL VOLUNTEERS MUST REGISTER AND BE SCHEDULED THROUGH MNA DISASTER RESPONSE.
Think what it would mean to these families if we could set-up all 22 sheds we have pre-built by Christmas.
Overnight housing is available for those coming to help build sheds.
This truck is loaded with all the materials for a Sheds of Hope storage shed. While it’s not an actual Shed-in-a-Truck (an idea we tested a couple of years ago*), it is everything needed for a Shed of Hope. A team from Lookout Mountain Presbyterian Church will join me to pre-build this shed at the Rome, Georgia Disaster Response Warehouse. The church provided the materials, and the members will learn how a shed is built and made ready for transportation to a disaster site. It is exciting to see more and more churches getting trained and involved!
What sort of help do we need for Sheds of Hope?
- to provide the materials for a Shed of Hope click here
- pre-build a Shed of Hope at your church. (or schedule a training)
Sheds of Hope Trivia question: Whatever happened to the Shed-in-a-Truck?
Answer: Only a few were ever built. They proved to be very time consuming at the build site. They may have a role to play in the future, if circumstances are right. Example: getting them into tight places — toting half panels through a small opening is much lighter and easier to handle than its full-sized cousins.
This video was produced by Curt Moore who is our MNA ShortTerm Specialist. He helped build the first four sheds in Panama City.
All our disaster sites need volunteers!
Volunteer Staging Sites have been set up in Florida at Panama City, and at Wilmington, NC and Mullins, SC. If you would like to volunteer please click here to register. For more information about serving click here. For a FAQ about volunteering please click here.
PLEASE NOTE: ALL VOLUNTEERS MUST REGISTER AND BE SCHEDULED THROUGH MNA DISASTER RESPONSE. If you have any questions you may contact Sherry Lanier at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Great news came out of New Bern, North Carolina tonight. Memorial Presbyterian Church from Elizabethton, Tennessee rolled into town with 2 Sheds of Hope. Last year, Memorial had pre-built 4 Sheds of Hope for storage at the Rome Warehouse, and this year they had pre-built 2 more. Instead of taking them to Rome, they loaded them up and took them to the new Disaster Response Staging Area (DRSA) at Village Chapel PCA in New Bern. They will be used to store equipment and supplies. Memorial PC is about 360 miles from New Bern.
Lake Oconee Presbyterian Church in Eatonton, Georgia has pre-built 24 sheds since January 2017. As part of their regularly scheduled build last week, they pre-built 4 Sheds of Hope. These will head to their destinations as soon as our DR staff has evaluated the needs in the flooded area. Lake Oconee is about 425 miles from New Bern.
It is so exciting to see that churches that have been trained are well prepared to meet the disaster head on.
Thanks to all the men and women who make Sheds of Hope possible, who support the ministry with their time, skills and resources.
For the response to Hurricane Florence, Memorial and Lake Oconee are the closest churches that have had training in pre-building Sheds of Hope. As more churches get trained, we hope to reach our goal to have a network of churches trained and prepared to supply Sheds of Hope within a 300-mile radius of a disaster.
If you would like to get trained in how to build Sheds of Hope, give me a call and let’s get you on the schedule. Over the next few weeks, I will be in Michigan, Georgia and Texas, training churches.
The MNA Disaster Response Warehouse in Rome, Georgia gets a new fleet of wheeled benches. I was able to bring a SmartBench from our Dallas Warehouse, outfit two supporting workbenches, enabling the three benches to work together for the pre-building of Sheds of Hope. We have all of these benches at our Dallas Warehouse, but this line got wheels so that they can be moved around the Rome Warehouse as needed. This will greatly help with layout and pre-building. We are going to schedule a training class late summer early fall. Dates for this training will be available soon.
Park Cities Presbyterian Church is helping the next generation get an idea of what it is like to help people. They pre-built a Shed of Hope at the Dallas Disaster Response Warehouse on Friday, and on Saturday they set up two Sheds of Hope for families in Rowlett. It was a cold day on Saturday, but everyone worked hard and got the two Sheds of Hope finished in just 4-1/2 hours. The kids loved using the drills, and now the dads know what to get them for Christmas! Make sure it is an impact drill. 🙂
It’s amazing how much can be accomplished in just 1 hour and 18 minutes. Thanks to the newly developed scaffolding, the fine-tuning of the pre-build process, and the careful assembly by volunteers at churches and at the Dallas warehouse, teams setting up Sheds of Hope have become more and more efficient. It doesn’t take long to deliver a blessing to a family, and share the smiles, stories and hugs that can bring the love of Christ a little closer to wounded people.
Teams from Park Cities Presbyterian Church in Dallas, Texas have been going to Houston to help build Sheds of Hope since the fall of 2017. These teams leave Dallas on Thursday evening, build Sheds on Friday and Saturday getting back to Dallas Saturday evening. Teams can build 3 to 4 sheds depending on the weather and location of the builds.
During our last trip, we had one of our biggest challenges. Thankfully, the team was up to the task, setting up a Shed of Hope between a fence and the house with about 2″ to spare. These teams have a mind and heart to work. This one finished the job at about 8pm on Friday. It was their 3rd Shed that day.
The music in this video is by David Dunn and is used by permission. For tours and other music by David Dunn, visit DavidDunnMusic.com