Churches, groups join disaster relief effort

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Local churches and groups join the disaster relief efforts throughout the Southeast:

Canaan Baptist Church – Pastor Mike Andrews said Canaan Baptist is working through an organization founded by Travis Sharpe, who also founded the Garden City Rescue Mission in Augusta. The organization-- Unsheltered International-- is set up in a high school parking lot in Cullman, Ala. feeding law enforcement, state troopers, National Guard, other rescue personnel and storm victims. The group fed more than 300 people yesterday. They have received donations of frozen food from many Cullman restaurants because the town has no power and the food would otherwise spoil. Unsheltered has three generators and four deep freezers. Their main need is additional refrigeration, such as a refrigerated truck, to keep more food from spoiling. They also are in need of disposable plates, eating utensils and cups. Andrews said Canaan Baptist sent money to help them. Others may donate, view pictures or read updates on the website, www.unsheltered.org.

Martinez-Columbia Fire Rescue – According to Public Information Officer Jeremy Wallen, the department deployed 7 personnel, one pumper and three support apparatus to Catoosa County Thursday.  They were assigned to Strike Team 10 upon arrival … “After hours of exhausting work,” the Catoosa fire service asked Martinez personnel to remain and provide fire service from 8 pm Thursday to 7 am Friday to allow local responders a few hours of rest.  They stayed in the City of Ringgold.

The Salvation Army of Augusta – A team of volunteers from Augusta left Friday morning to go to Tuscaloosa with the unit’s mobile canteen. They will remain there up to 14 days, according to Anthony Esposito, public relations for Salvation Army. The mobile canteen will provide water, food, clean up kits, hygiene kits, first aid supplies and emotional/spiritual counseling to victims of the disaster. They also have a radio network with helps with missing person issues.
In order to meet the specific needs of storm victims in affected areas, monetary donations are being accepted.  Donations can be made at www.salvationarmygeorgia.org or mail a check with “Disaster Services” in the “for” line to: Salvation Army of Augusta,  1384 Greene St., Augusta, GA 30901. The Salvation Army currently is not accepting donations of clothing and furniture for storm victims.

The American Red Cross of Augusta –
Three local volunteers were deployed to Alabama and Missouri and two additional local volunteers have headed to Atlanta, the state Red Cross headquarters and LaGrange, according to Richard Farley, chair of the Augusta Red Cross.
“The American Red Cross is making sure people have a safe place to stay and food to eat. We will be there as long as needed as families struggle to get through this terrible tragedy,” said Richard Fairey, chair of the Augusta Red Cross. “The Red Cross is working  in communities across a lage part of the country helping people affected by these storms.
“In addition, our ERV (emergency response vehicle) is on stand by to be deployed when the damage from last night’s storms in Georgia is assessed,” Fairey said.
Those who want to help the people affected by these disasters can make a donation to support the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.  To donate, visit the website, www.redcross.org or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation or call 1800- RED-CROSS.  Contributions may also be sent to American Red Cross of Augusta, 1322 Ellis Street, Augusta, Georgia 30901.

Lynn Davidson can be reached at 706-823-3332 or emailed at lynn.davidson@augustachronicle.com.


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