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open homes for a family in need

My wife Judi has an idea that I think is wonderful. How about creating a list or a network of people that will allow those in need of housing a place to stay until they can rebuild or at least get back on their feet. Our children are grown and we have a few extra bed rooms, and we would be more than happy to allow a needy family hit by a disaster to stay with us in our home. If not a live network, how about a volunteer list you could assist with posting after a disaster hits.

Submitted by in Nov 2012

Comments (1)

  1. Many churches already have such programs (get the local minister/pastor to check with the denomination headquarters if he doesn't know of such programs)

    Local churches and local social organizations are the logical places to organize and manage a program like this due to the small numbers involved and the need for individual matching.

    The practicalities of dealing with a disaster are that even "local" government agencies are dealing with far larger numbers of people. But if the local church, Rotary Club, etc, can come forward to say "we can accommodate five displaced families of 2-4 people each" that starts to be something local government can deal with.

    Sheltering displaced families comes under Emergency Support Function 6 (ESF 6). The lead agency actually doing sheltering is most often the Red Cross, often with assistance from various churchs. Short term sheltering of large numbers is generally done in the kind of "shelter" you see on the TV news (cots in a school gym, for example) - but when the numbers are smaller and the time is longer, displaced families may be put up in hotels or other facilities. The bottom line however is that the vast majority of displaced families beyond the first days or hours of a disaster end up "staying with friends or relatives" -- most of these are arranged on a personal basis, but many are arranged through local church groups.

    If you are interested in starting or participating in such a program, start by talking with the leaders at your local church (you don't necessarily have to be a member) or community ministry office.
    in Nov 2012

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