Assistance for Tornado Damaged Areas

posted on April 16

Shared May 16, 2018, with district clergy & laity:

Disaster Response Update - Tornado Recovery

Thank you for the many ways that you and your churches have responded to help in the wake of the tornadoes that caused so much damage in our district in both Greensboro and Rockingham County!
Below is a note from Dr. Maria Hanlin, CEO of Habitat Greensboro, particularly related to the ongoing work and expected future help that will be needed in East Greensboro, Habitat Greensboro is coordinating recovery work with the City of Greensboro.
Thank you for sharing this with your congregation!
From Habitat Greensboro:
On behalf of Habitat Greensboro, I want to say thank you to the United Methodist Churches of this District for how you have responded with open hearts, open minds and open hands to those effected by the EF2 tornadoes. They hit East Greensboro, one of the most vulnerable areas of our city, on April 15th. The area has been devastated. Habitat Greensboro was there the morning of April 16th and every day for helping with emergency response (cutting down hundreds of trees, putting tarps on roofs, boarding up windows.) City leaders asked Habitat to coordinate construction volunteers and to partner with Community Housing Solutions for repairs. Habitat will work on repairing homes for months/years ahead.

Our goal is to take this vulnerable and devastated area and make it better than before the tornadoes, better than we imagine it can be. It will take the entire community to help, to realize that now that media attention has waned away, the real work of ministry begins. The United Methodist Committee on Relief contacted Habitat Greensboro within hours of the disaster to ask how they could help coordinate efforts. Rev. Maria King of the District Office and Ricky Hill, our Conference Disaster Relief Coordinator, have met with Habitat Greensboro to discuss helping with repairing and restoring hundreds of homes impacted. Several United Methodist Churches have sent financial contributions which are immensely helpful as Habitat focuses on restoring uninsured homeowners who simply do not have the funds but so often are living paycheck to paycheck.

Thank you to so many people and churches asking how you can help - what a faithful community. Volunteer construction teams will be needed but we will not know when we can begin until FEMA has completed their assessments. Thank you for your patience for now and for your help for months to come. Financial donations are always welcome and will be 100% spent on tornado recovery. For now, we do not need supplies but could need building supplies in weeks ahead.

Mainly, thank you for how you live your faith everyday and are the hands and feet of Christ.

In Christ,
Dr. Maria Hanlin
CEO, Habitat Greensboro

Shared April 19, 2018 with district clergy, lay leaders, and outreach contacts:

As you gather for worship on Sunday we encourage each congregation to pray for all who were affected by the tornado on Sunday, April 15th. We appreciate your response across the district and ask you to consider the following ways to continue our long term commitment to our community.
Monetary Contributions:
There are several ways that you can help through monetary contributions:
  • If you prefer to donate through our district, to support relief efforts now and going forward, you can donate to our Northern Piedmont District Disaster Relief Fund.  Please make checks payable to Northern Piedmont District, and mail them to: Northern Piedmont District, PO Box 4523, Greensboro, NC 27404-4523. Please note on the memo line…NP Disaster Response. These funds will help our long term commitment to repair and restore homes through building teams & volunteers, provide financial support for teachers and social workers from the three damaged elementary schools, and other needs for families affected by the tornado.
  • One of our district churches, Ruffin United Methodist Church, in northern Rockingham County, was damaged by the tornado. If you would like to help defray any immediate needs and other expenses insurance doesn’t cover for Ruffin UMC, you can donate by sending a check to Ruffin United Methodist Church, c/o Rev. Lee Eggers, P.O. Box 66, Ruffin, NC 27326. Any funds not needed by the church will be used to support relief efforts in the surrounding community, which also experienced significant damages from the tornado.
  • The City of Greensboro, through the Volunteer Center of Greensboro, has provided additional information about where monetary contributions can be received, including United Way, The Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro, and American Red Cross. Here is the link to that information on the Volunteer Center of Greensboro website:
  • The Guilford County Schools have provided information on their website about both monetary and item donation. Here is the link to that information on their website:
Donation of Needed Supplies:
There are several ways that you can help through donation of needed supplies:
  • Bag lunches are still needed. If you have a group in your church able to make a quantity of sandwiches / bag lunches, please contact Rev. Maria King, our Northern Piedmont District Church Vitality Strategist, at 336-339-0504  with the amount of lunches you can provide, and when you can deliver them.  She is working with local community clinics and others to distribute them in the affected area.
  • We are collecting the following items at Laughlin United Methodist Church, 1417 Huffine Mill Rd, Greensboro, NC 27405. Please drop off the items in the Fellowship Hall on the lower level. The collection hours next week are:  Monday – Friday, 10 am – 4pm. Items they are collecting include:
    • Flashlights with battery replacement
    • Work Gloves
    • Heavy Duty Trash bags
    • Non-perishable food items
  • Christ United Methodist Church in Greensboro has a several long relationship with Hampton Elementary School, one of the significantly damaged schools and neighborhoods. They are working directly with the principal and the school social worker to address specific needs of teachers, students, and families. They have shared in their newsletter lots of information about items needed, and who to contact. Here is a link to the newsletter information shared today: The contact person is Carolyn McKinney.  
  • The City of Greensboro, through the Volunteer Center of Greensboro, has provided additional information about where supplies and need items can be received…including the Interactive Resource Center, and the Guilford Education Alliance. Here is the link to that information on the Volunteer Center of Greensboro website:
  • The Guilford County Schools have provided information on their website about item donation. Here is the link to that information on their website:
Ways to Volunteer:
  • The City of Greensboro, through the Volunteer Center of Greensboro, is sharing volunteer opportunities. Here is a link to the volunteer opportunities page on their website: Be sure to click on “See more needs” to see all of the volunteer opportunities. And, you can also call them at  336-373-1633.  There is an update from April 18th on the City of Greensboro website with some information about city efforts at:
  • When we have it, we will share information about how church teams can aid in repair efforts. We are still in the emergency phase, and patience is important as we wait for it to be safe and possible for teams to help.
If you have any questions, please contact Rev. Maria King at 336-339-0504.
Thank you again for reaching out to help people in our communities who have experienced such loss and trauma from the storms. Every effort will share the love Christ, and make a difference!

Shared April 16, 2018 with district clergy, lay leaders, and outreach contacts:

As you have seen on the news, there are a lot of people in need of help after the tornadoes that went through our area yesterday. We are aware of at least one of our churches that experienced damage in Rockingham County (Ruffin United Methodist Church). Please keep all of the people and communities that experienced damage in your prayers as work begins to recover from this disaster.
We have already had inquiries from churches in our district wanting to know how they can help. Thank you for reaching out!
We are just getting reports & expressions of need, but we do have definite information about needed assistance in the Cottage Grove community in Greensboro, near the Hampton Elementary School that experienced so much damage. We will share other information as we have it. The City of Greensboro is working to set up coordination of volunteer efforts, and is expected to have more information later today. The contact information for the city is 336-373-CITY (2489).
The Mustard Seed Community Health clinic in the Cottage Grove community and the Greensboro Housing Coalition reached out to us with a list of items that would be helpful. You can read more about the Mustard Seed Community Health clinic on their website at:
The needs list they provided is:
Bottled Water (Both individual and gallon size)
Bags of Ice
Coolers (Medium to Large size)
If your church can help by providing any of those items, you can deliver the items to the Mustard Seed clinic at the address below.  They are open until 5:00pm today, and open again tomorrow morning at 8:30am. They are closed for lunch from 1:00pm to 2:00pm.
Also, if your church might be able to provide some quantity of bag lunches, that would also be helpful. However, you definitely need to first contact Dr. Beth Mulberry about that possibility to coordinate with their needs. 
Contact Person:  Dr. Beth Mulberry, Medical Director
Mustard Seed Community Health
238 South English Street
Greensboro, NC 27401-3648
336.763.0814 Phone
The hours of operation are 8:30 am to 5:00 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays and 10:00 am to 7 pm on Wednesdays.

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