Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Disaster relief

RSS By: Pastor Craig Miller

Disaster relief coordinator Pastor Craig Miller shares disaster relief information in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

"I see how truly amazing God is in all of this."

Oct 23, 2014

"The volunteers are here and they are doing a wonderful job; Joe and I could not be more pleased. We know that this would not have been possible without yours and the "Lutheran Services" help. When I think back to how thirty-two years ago, a Lutheran pastor performed our marriage ceremony and helped in putting us together. Now, the same faith-based people have helped to put our home back together. I see how truly amazing God is in all of this. He led us to sign up with you, as it was his will, then he allowed you to give us this help. It is all, surely, his workings. We have really experienced true Christian charity. Now, I have an even greater hope than ever before because I know that you will all continue to serve. Many thanks for your help and your kind support."


After Hurricane Sandy flooding caused the sewer to back up into their ground floor, the Smiths (not their real name), a retired couple, received some monies from FEMA, which was used to gut the basement, remediate the mold, replace the hot water heater and other appliances. Rapid Repairs replaced their furnace and redid the electrical, but installed the incorrect outlets, resulting in a citation from the Department of Buildings. With this violation, the Smiths were unable to proceed with repairs to their home.


A Disaster Case Manager from LSSNY helped the Smiths to reach out to their local City Council representative, who worked to remove the violation. Estimated costs for the home repairs came out to over $11,000, more than the Smiths could afford, so LSSNY arranged for their Construction Manager to look over the project, in order to determine the scope of work and supply needs. The Case Manager arranged for Red Hook Volunteers, a group organized after Hurricane Sandy to help neighbors recover, to restore the sheetrock and insulation to the home. Supplies were provided by LSSNY through a special Home Depot portal at the New York City Unmet Needs Roundtable convened by New York Disaster Interfaith Services (NYDIS).


LSSNY provides Disaster Case Management and Construction Management as part of the New York State Disaster Sandy Case Management Program administered by Catholic Charities. As the Metropolitan New York affiliate of Lutheran Disaster Response, LSSNY has received funding for this program from LDR that enables them to expand their services.


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