While rescue and recovery efforts are underway in storm-damaged areas along the Gulf Coast, a disaster relief ministry has stayed busy in the region.
Early August 27th, Laura, a category four hurricane, made landfall and ravaged eastern Texas and the Lake Charles area of Louisiana. Eight Days of Hope co-founder Steve Tybor says Laura is just one element that has kept them extremely busy.
"From the hurricane earlier in the year that hit North Carolina to the crazy windstorm in Cedar Rapids that damaged 35,000 trees, and we've been down here in Lake Charles, Louisiana within two days of Hurricane Laura. We are still here," Tybor details. "Some areas of Lake Charles still, four weeks later, don't have power, but the volunteers have showed up in waves."
Even so, the ministry could still use more volunteers before closing down operations in the area, perhaps as early as October 4th.
"Even during the pandemic, we welcome them," says Tybor. "We are doing things a little bit differently than we've done in the past, but we're still providing a safe place for volunteers to sleep, and we're feeding them really good. The good news is where we're at, we have air conditioning. Right now in Louisiana, air conditioning is important."
Eight Days of Hope has sent supplies to other coastal regions impacted by storms this season. The ministry may also set up shop in Pensacola, Florida to help out there; decisions are being made on an as-needed basis.