Hurricane Gustav News & Information
Note: This page is no longer actively maintained as of September 3, 2008.
This page will list all of the current information we have about the impact of Hurricane Gustav and the activities of our churches and ministries to provide relief.
For the last 30 hours, since Sunday evening, this page has posted and updated the public advisory information released by the National Hurricane Center (typically every two hours). Now that Gustav has moved fully inland and has weakend from a tropical storm to a tropical depression, this page will focus on the relief efforts of our ministries instead of the weather news. The links to the weather updates in each map will be maintained, but the map images shown below will no longer be updated on this site after the 10:00 p.m. scheduled release. Please follow the links on the maps below to go to the National Hurricane Center for current information or its archive of its public advisory releases.
From Rev. Johnny Wray, Director, Week of Compassion
Reported at 4:00 p.m., Monday
After leaving a path of devastation and death throughout the Caribbean, Hurricane Gustav is today bearing down on the U.S. Gulf Coast. Some two million people from South Alabama, across coastal Mississippi, and Louisiana to Southeast Texas have evacuated their homes in advance of Gustav's Category 3 winds, rains, and tidal surges. The Gulf Coast is still recovering from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita that devastated the region just three years ago.
At least 94 people were killed in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, and Cuba, and tens of thousands of homes were destroyed. Week of Compassion has already begun providing emergency grants to church partners in the Caribbean to support their relief and recovery efforts and is now garnering resources to respond to Gustav's wake in the Gulf South. While there are many uncertainties and anxieties ahead, Disciples do have a strong network of Disciples Mission Stations across the region, a growing cadre of trained and experienced station managers, hundreds of seasoned volunteers, and excellent partnerships with Church World Service, and some 30 long-term recovery organizations in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas that will enable us to have an active and engaged participation in long term relief and recovery work. How timely that even later today the Office of Disciples Volunteering is beginning another leadership training event in Raleigh, North Carolina.
As soon as we have information on Gustav's impact on our congregations and members and how we Disciples can best support relief and recovery efforts, we'll be sharing that information through these updates and on the WOC website: www.weekofcompassion.org. In the meanwhile, please remember all the people and communities in the Caribbean and the Gulf South who have been or will be affected with your prayers, plan to make a generous gift to WOC for hurricane relief and recovery, and watch for details from the Office of Disciples Volunteering on the best way we Disciples can respond with work groups in the weeks, months, and years to come.
God bless, --jww
Local Relief Efforts
Reported 4:30pm, Monday
It has been projected that 45,000 people, or more, could evacuate to the DFW Metroplex. Here's how the organizations will coordinate the response:
The North Texas Food Bankwill provide food for meal preparation. At this time, they are not actively seeking food donations, but monetary donations are always needed.
The Salvation Army will provide meals at all mass shelter locations.
The American Red Cross will manage and oversee shelter operations.
The Volunteer Center of North Texas will coordinate volunteer placement for the relief effort.
Reported at 5:00 p.m., Monday
The American Red Cross - Dallas Area Chapter is seeking assistance with the following items:
10,000 bath towels
10,000 hand sanitizers, alcohol based (2 oz size)
If you would like to donate these to the Dallas Area Red Cross for use in shelters, please contact Fran Johnson, Red Cross Logistics Lead, at 469-628-4160.
Reported 10 p.m., Monday
The Volunteer Center of North Texas is in immediate need of volunteers to help serve meals at shelters that are already open for Hurricane Gustav evacuees. As the evacuation continues, volunteers will be needed for other roles as well. All volunteers must complete a volunteer application form. Volunteers SHOULD NOT go to a shelter expecting to volunteer without prior approval, as every volunteer must pass a criminal background check in order to serve. If you have any questions, please contact the Volunteer Center at 866-797-8268.
NOTE: The American Red Cross, Dallas Area Chapter, will hold volunteer training sessions at 4800 Harry Hines Blvd. in Dallas on the following dates from 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.:
- September 1, 2008
- September 2, 2008
- September 3, 2008
- September 4, 2008
- September 5, 2008
Additional training dates may be scheduled. For more details and the latest information, please visit http://www.redcrossdallas.org/ or call 214-678-4800.
Reported 10 p.m., Monday
The Fort Worth Office of Emergency Management is in need of volunteers to support staff in the operational phase of maintaining two shelters. Opportunities will include monitoring shelter needs, distributing donations, and administrative support. Volunteers must be at least 18 years of age for the following locations:
Fort Worth, TX 76115
Worth Heights Shelter
3551 New York Ave.
Fort Worth, TX 76110
For more information or to volunteer, please contact Calvin Brown at 817-929-8745.
From Herb Lynskey Area Minister, Coastal Plains Area
Reported approximately 7:00 p.m., Sunday
Word from our sister churches in the Houston area is that Jefferson County, Texas (the county seat is Beaumont) has begun evacuation. All the of the appropriate agencies are asking that Houston area churches or others that might provide places to stay to NOT open at this time. They have asked that everyone wait until Gustav makes landfall. It seems at this time that Gustav is headed to make landfall between New Orleans and the Texas/Louisiana state line. This will put New Orleans and the northern coastal plains area and parts of the northeast area at the top of the hurricane; major rain should hit the Houston area Wednesday/Thursday with flash flooding.
Right now those with plans are getting ready and we continue to monitor the storm. Last minute changes of direction can still occur. We are being patient and in a non-panic mode.
Keep everyone in your prayers.
From Dani Loving Cartwright, Regional Minister
Reported approximately 7:00 p.m., Sunday
Word from the Golden Triangle (an area of Southeast Texas between the cities of Beaumont, Port Arthur, and Orange in the far east coastal plains area) is that they have evacuated. The East Texas churches are the first stop places for folks coming West.
Encourage congregations who want to know what to do to send contributions immediately to Week of Compassion for Hurricane Recovery.
Evacuating New Orleans (from Hurricane Katrina)
Ready.gov Hurricane Preparation Information:
DHS/FEMA's Gustav Web Site:
Department of Commerce/NOAA's National Hurricane Center:
SBA Disaster Loan Information:
IRS Tax Relief During Disasters:
Want to Volunteer?
For voluntary agencies or organizations, including faith-based and community groups, who wish to assist with volunteer efforts in disaster response and recovery, please contact your state Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) point-of-contact at http://www.nvoad.org/AboutUs/StateVOADs/tabid/76/Default.aspx.
In Texas, the primary organization for disaster response volunteerism: the American Red Cross at www.redcross.org.
Need to Apply for Assistance?
To apply for individual or public assistance, see www.fema.gov/assistance/index.shtmor call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).
The Track of Hurricane Gustav
The Track Of Gustav To Landfall on Monday
From the National Hurricane Center
Please note that as of the 4:00 a.m. Tuesday advisory, the National Hurricane Center will not make any additional advisories on Gustav, which weakened overnight into a tropical depression.
To review the NHC's archive of all issued advisories for Gustav, click here.
National Hurricane Center Podcast
To listen to streaming media of the MP3 podcast of the 2 pm CDT (1pm EDT) NHC Public Advistory, click here. When you click to the link, the MP3 file will play via streaming media in the default media player on your PC. This podcast will no longer be updated at this site.
You can subscribe directly to the RSS feed of this podcast at http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/audio/index_podcast.xml.