DALLAS, Texas (August 26, 2011) –
As Hurricane Irene threatens to become the most powerful storm to hit the East Coast in seven years, World Vision is preparing for a rapid deployment of relief supplies. The Christian relief organization has teams on alert ready to deploy this weekend to areas hit hardest by the storm. National emergency officials are urging the entire East Coast to prepare for a "hurricane of historic proportions" to slam into the Eastern seaboard this weekend.
"We're bracing for a possible impact that could be devastating," says Phyllis Freeman, World Vision's domestic emergency response director. "We are concerned for lower-income families who don't have the funds needed to properly prepare for this dangerous storm, but the biggest needs will emerge after the storm has passed."
To ensure a swift response to those in need, World Vision is preparing essential relief items like personal hygiene kits, cleaning supplies, clothing, shoes, and building materials which are vital for recovery efforts. These supplies are prepositioned in the organization's 56,000 square-foot Domestic Disaster Response Hub in Dallas, Texas.
Currently, World Vision staff is reaching out to its network of community organizations, churches, and other partners in the region. The network, created after Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, will help distribute relief supplies and other brand new items that companies donate to World Vision.
"One of our biggest fears is that people are disaster weary," says Freeman who is a veteran of the agency's Hurricane Katrina response. "From floods, to tornadoes, to hurricanes this is the most severe weather season I have seen in the United States in my 14 years of doing disaster response."
World Vision response teams are still providing ongoing relief to tornado survivors in Alabama, Virginia, Minnesota and Missouri. In Tuscaloosa and Joplin alone, World Vision has served over 9,700 tornado survivors including 1,000 children who recently received backpacks filled with school supplies.
World Vision works domestically through eight distribution facilities across the nation, each stocked with essentials ranging from clothing and personal care items to school, cleaning, and building supplies. The agencies programming focuses on youth development, support of schools and communities and emergency response and rebuilding. The public can help by visiting www.worldvision.org,
by texting IRENE to 777444 to give $10, or by calling (888) 56-CHILD (24453).
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About World Vision:
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. We serve the world's poor — regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender.For more information on their efforts, visit WorldVision.org/press or follow them on Twitter at @WorldVisionNews