Relayed through Gay O’Deens, wife of pastor Dan O’Deens, here is an update as of Monday evening, Labor Day:
Monday Sept 5th
Dan called tonight and Shreveport, Louisiana, Red Cross Chapter is at least feeling structurally organized. They have been in close contact with Baton Rouge where a national headquarters is set up.
Shreveport is housing approximately 6,000 evacuees at this time in shelters and
they have been working on medical and mental health as well as organization.
Soon they will begin the task of working on individual client/family care. This is where individual needs are hopefully being met and money disbursed.
They received good news today, that FEMA will be reimbursing the hotel bills
refugees have incurred. (The actual hotel room, not cable, movies etc.)
The next two days Dan will be going to the shelters to see how all the people are being cared for there. This will help in the plan he is working on to help the refugees with long term care, possibly in a larger facility. He does not want to be creating a plan that does not serve the purpose to truly meet the people’s needs.
Some of the shelters have been political nightmares. The news media are coming in and asking questions that make not only the government but Red Cross and FEMA look bad. Most are not in this to get recognition or a pat on the back but to really help the evacuees.
If people are willing to come get a family and take them on for 3-4 months or indefinitely no one is stopping them. There are too many to immediately get to. There are many risks involved.
Goshen, Indiana, Grace Brethren Church with Pastor Jim Brown and Pastor
Jeremiah Olson are working on taking on some families, getting them acclimated to society and starting again there in Goshen. Pastor Jim has taken some men to Louisiana area and is trying to help also. Dan and he are trying to connect.
Keep praying for all
Pete Petroski @ YGBC