Over the July 4th weekend CH Toni Barros and CH Brenda Swartz deployed to assist the flood victims in West Virginia. What a learning experience this was. Here are some of the highlights of what we learned;
~ Prior to leaving have a Rear Detachment set up to handle additional needs, logistics and information flow. Having a Rear Detachment (back home group of Chaplains) will allow research of shelters, contact names and additional needs getting done while the deployment group is traveling. The Rear “D” will also assist in information flow both between the group and community.
~ Definitely need to make sure we have a paper map (yes they still print them). Being in the mountains and in a devastated place created phone and GPS issues….. no service. We traveled so many back roads delivering food and we used “word of mouth” to get us there.
Our mission for this deployment to West Virginia included visiting shelters and delivering food supplies to areas that were still waiting on FEMA to get there. The make shift distribution areas in the communities were such a blessing and meeting so many people who just gave from heart was inspiring. We went to be a blessings to the families in WVA and we came home being blessed.
A BIG thank you to New Life Christian Church in Summerville, WVA! They housed us, fed us and had praise and worship and a devotional prayer time every morning and evening for those of us staying in their school gym.