WOODSTOCK, VA – Since weather forecasters are predicting a record number of hurricanes for this year, with the start of the season on June 1, the World Foundation for Children (WFC) is gearing up to give financial support to churches in disaster areas along the U. S. coast.
The forecasters – both from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Colorado State University — predict “above-average probability” of 18 to 20 named storms this year in the Atlantic, with the probability of up to eleven becoming hurricanes, of which as many as six may be major hurricanes. A normal year is considered to be six hurricanes and three major storms.
“We focus on supporting local churches of all faiths because in my experience in working more than 300 disasters, we have found that churches do the best job of delivering essential assistance to children and their families affected by disasters,” according to Bob Blair, WFC chairman.
“Churches of all faiths are on the front line during both the emergency and long-range recovery periods,” Blair said. “They do not disappear after a week or two when the news media and other agencies lose interest, and churches expend immense energy and passion as long as their financial resources permit, which can take up to three years to help a devastated community return to normal. The WFC tries to supplement the financial capabilities of churches so they can complete their work of helping children impacted by disasters.
Blair said, “We note that the Federal Disaster Relief Act, (Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public Law 93-288), fails to include any specific mention of aid for children, assuming the trickle-down process of aid to parents from federal, state and charity agencies. A major problem is that too many families do not qualify for sufficient aid to get back on their feet after a disaster, because the current economy had already left them devastated without insurance and the capability of re-paying federal disaster low-interest loans, so the children suffer.”
Some of the forms of supplemental assistance that churches can provide children with WFC funding include replacement pets and supplies, toys, books, special foods or beverages, baby diapers and supplies, shoes and clothing, and payment of expenses for doctors, dentists, hospitals, medical supplies and prosthetics, mental or physical therapy, prescriptions or funeral expenses.
The WFC welcomes inquiries from churches and non-profit organizations providing disaster assistance, as well as college students needing internships who wish to volunteer in the summer, fall or winter. WFC is transparent and anyone may request free subscriptions to WFC’s disaster electronic newsletters providing periodic financial and progress reports.
The WFC welcomes donations to its disaster preparedness fund from churches, non-profit organizations, businesses, individuals and families. Please mark your donation for Disaster Relief.
Donors may specify a state in which funds may be used. Tax deductible gifts may be mailed to WFC, 277 Crider Lane, Woodstock, VA 22664, phone: 540-459-3478 or online at here.