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David and Lynda Porter receive 2014
Mark A. Madison
Volunteer of Excellence Award
Pictured above left to right are Dan Walker, Mark Madison, Lynda Porter, DavidPorter, and
pastor Russ Robinson
Each year at the Salt Lake Baptist Association Annual Meeting a special Hall of Fame type award is presented to someone who has been nominated to be recognized as the outstanding volunteer of excellence for that year. The award originated in 2008 when the award was presented to Mark A. Madison and named in recognition of his incredible work in the development of Disaster Relief Ministries in the Salt Lake Baptist Association and throughout Utah and Idaho. The awardis based on a lifetime of service that helps to shape the course of Southern Baptist Churches and Ministries in the Salt Lake Baptist Association area. Individuals are nominated by pastors, ministry leaders, staff,or lay leaders from the association.
David and Lynda recieved multiple nominations one of which was from their pastor Russ Robinson, pastor of First Baptist Church of Provo. Pastor Robinson noted on his nomination, "They are hands on people in ministry to others. They are truely examples of Christ-likeness in that they are always seeking to glorify the Father and not themselves. Their lives demonstrate sacrificial living as they often sacrifice vacation time to serve others in need."
David and Lynda live a life that is exemplary of what the Mark A. Madison Volunteer Award was designed to recognize. Thank you Porters for your life of excellent volunteerism.
Salt Lake Baptist Association Recognized for Colorado Flood Response
SLBA Disaster Relief participates in Carbon County Recovery
Article by Michelle Mason
There were a total of 15 volunteers who activate for the flooding in Carbon County September 28th through October 5th.
On 9/28 we were contacted by Red Cross to activate our shower unit to set up at a shelter for flood evacuees at the Event Center in Price Utah.
On the way to set up an axle broke but we were able to scotch the broken axle where it would not drag the ground and limped into Price, Even in spite of the difficulties We were still able to have the shower unit functional by 6:30 pm that evening and it was operational through October 1st before the shelter was shut down.
The actual flooding was located in Wellington, Utah which is a small community just south of Price Utah.
On Monday evening, September 29th, Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers that were maintaining the shower unit were invited to a town Hall meeting for flood victims in Wellington. The purpose of the meeting was to provide communication for those impacted and to establish the next steps for recovery. SBC Disaster Relief received a very warm welcome from the City Council and the Emergency manger for Carbon County. We were then asked to get involved and to provide information as to what services we might provide. As you would expect in a small community a lot of volunteers had immediately come to help those with flooded homes and a lot of the basement tear out and already begun once the basements were pumped out. As initial assessment team made the action plan to provide mainly sanitation work for the impacted homes which include power washing and mold and bacteria treatment with Shock Wave.
Also it was determined to place two teams on activation as we wanted a major presence of gold shirts, and two activate two chaplains to be available as homeowners began to become weary form the hard work of recovery and move beyond the initial shock of seeing homes flooded and personal belongings destroyed.
There were a total of 14 homes and 10 trailer houses that were flooded. Of the 24 homes impacted only 1 had purchased flood insurance. All of the trailer homes that were flooded were condemned as well as two permanent residences.
Our chaplains were able to meet with one of the homeowners whose house had been condemned and minister and pray with her, and elderly widow who had lived in the home most of her life.
On Tuesday a call-out was made for volunteers to begin sanitation work on Friday October 3 through Monday October 6th and a total of 14 people responded.
This included three volunteers for the kitchen and 11 for mud-out work.
We began work on Friday and due the experience and work ethic of the volunteers finished the remaining 12 homes by 3:00pm on Saturday two days earlier than anticipated.
There remains two, and possibly a third, homes that still need Shock Wave treatment in the crawl space.
The ground was simply too muddy to complete the crawl spaces so we are letting it dry and David Porter will lead a small team to return and complete the jobs this next weekend.
Previous Disaster Relief News!
Pray for Don Dana currently in the Philippines!
The following articles comes from the team leader tha Don is serving with in the Philippines.
After two days on the ground in and around Tacloban, a city of 217,000 before Typhoon Yolanda I have seen more need than we can handle as a region. We may be able to manage and even sustain operations for a considerable time. However, we can't do it without considerable assistance from many if not most of our SBDR regions.
The local IMB missionaries are great folks as well as survivors but I am unsure they or BGR comprehends the difference between disaster recovery operations and the average church group trip.
I believe that if we take this on we must commit to joining local community leadership, helping their efforts succeed for at least a year. Rent/lease damaged facilities to house teams. Cut a deal with the owners to repair for rent consideration, purchase a van for transporting teams, hire local drivers and housekeeping/cook personnel, and put long-term leadership on the ground alongside local missionaries to supplement their efforts and not be a drain on them.
I have specifically committed to working with local community leaders using their priorities to restore healing and health. They have identified clean water as a first priority using health clinics, schools, and churches as primary locations.
Although there is an on-going need for housing that will continue for multiple years their next stated priority is helping people get back to work. Probably the easiest and quickest target group to impact us are fishermen by providing or helping them secure boats.
Another issue we should consider is bringing the Miller's house and facilities back to pre-typhoon living status as soon as possible.
Although it is only 6:40 pm here, my brain is fried. I pray that the information I have provided is of value to you and I will write more tomorrow. Go to our webpage to see photos that Lora is posting. God bless you all.
Check back regularly for updates on Don Dana and the team he is serving with.
Pictured above Paul and Tommie receive the 2013 Joel Phillips award at the Disaster Relief National Round Table in Toccoa Georgia. This prestigious award recognizes volunteers who have given years of dedicated and exemplary service to Disaster Relief. Only two of these awards are given in any year. Congratulations to Paul and Tommie Palmer on this well deserved recognition.
Featured below is the award presentation as presented at the National Round Table.
Tommie & Paul Palmer
2014 Round Table; Toccoa, Georgia
· In about the year 2000 Paul retired from the Railroad and Tommie and Paul built their dream home in Tennessee to live out their retirement years. Having always been active servants for Christ their goal was to become an active part of the Disaster Relief Ministry in Tennessee while enjoying their new home and free time.
· God had other plans! Their son Mike Palmer became the pastor in a little church in Salmon, Idaho and Paul and Tommie felt the calling to go join him in this ministry. The church consisted of maybe 30 member who stepped up and committed to a full time Pastor with the vision to become the a leading church in the area winning this small community for Christ. Paul and Tommie packed up and moved from Tennessee to Salmon Idaho. Their plans for active involvement in Disaster Relief had been put on hold, so they thought. They busied themselves assisting the church to grow and expand and this little church began to grow and win people for Christ in an area heavily populated area that believes in books other than the Bible.
· Again God had other plans! They began to look around to see if there was a Disaster Relief ministry they could join. Soon they learned that the Utah/Idaho Convention did not have a Disaster Relief ministry. They found out Wyoming had a small kitchen unit and they began to investigate how they might become a part of Wyoming Disaster Relief. About this same time 911 hit and it only intensified their determination to become part of a Disaster Relief ministry. The DOM in Salt Lake City also had a vision to begin a Disaster Relief ministry and bought a Cargo trailer with the intention of building a recovery unit to be used with a few volunteers doing building and recovery activities on a local level. Dan Walker enlisted Sam Porter in 10/2002 to come and introduce the Disaster Relief ministry to the Salt Lake Baptist Association. Through the State Convention Paul and Tommie heard of the introduction and attended that meeting and a Disaster Relief ministry was birthed.
· God had much bigger plans. Through a Partnership with Georgia Baptist, Jim Richardson and his team jumped at the chance to come and assist the ministry. Jim brought his trainers and volunteers quickly began to catch the vision and sign up. Soon training began to also take place in other locations outside the Salt Lake Baptist Association including Salmon Idaho and the State Convention could no longer ignore the Disaster Relief ministry and it became a full State Convention ministry. Soon it became the strongest single ministry in the Sate Convention polarizing a widely scattered and diverse State Convention. Paul and Tommie became leaders in the Eastern Idaho Association leading a strong a talented group of volunteers to become an active part of the Disaster Relief ministry. Under Paul and Tommie’s leadership Eastern Idaho built a recovery unit, mobile kitchen, communication unit, and eventually a shower unit. Their volunteers are recognized as some of the most skilled chain saw volunteers in all of Disaster Relief ministry.
· God still had bigger ideas for Paul and Tommie: When Hurricane Katrina hit we received a call with a donation of trucks to assist in the recovery and volunteer management work. Paul and Tommie were enlisted to help Terry Henderson is acquisition and distribution fo these Dodge Trucks. Terry quickly realized the level of commitment from Paul and Tommie and enlisted them with a new and developing Incident Management Team. From that point forward Paul and Tommie have worked with the Incident Management Team throughout the United States. They have worked tirelessly in hundreds of disasters serving Disaster Relief volunteers from New England to California. They spent several months coordinating efforts in operation Noah. This entire time they have been a team serving as Ambassadors’ for Christ with a winning smile and a warm heart. Through this process they have developed many close friends and assisted numerous people in their walk with Christ.
· Back to that little church in Salmon, Idaho: Through the leadership of the pastor and help form Tommie and Paul that little church in Salmon has not only grown but has become recognized as a community center. It has missioned at least four other churches that are also growing and thriving. Their goal of winning Eastern Idaho for Christ is on going and Paul and Tommie remain a vital part of this ministry.
· It is my pleasure to present the 2014 Joel Phillips Award Recipients.
Tommie and Paul Palmer!!!
Disaster Relief Receives Volunteer of the Year Award from Sturgis Mayor
Disaster Relief Receives Volunteer of the Year Award from Sturgis Mayor
Like caped-crusaders, the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers showed up in Sturgis at just the right time following the early November blizzard that devastated the town.
"They were here quickly and stayed for an extended period. From a morale standpoint, it was tremendously uplifting," said Sturgis City Manager Daniel Ainslie.
And for their efforts, the group has been given the city's Volunteer of the Year award.
Following the storm, 110 Volunteers arrived in Sturgis to provide more than 576 days of disaster clean-up work.
"Many of those receiving help from this group were elderly and or disabled," Ainslie said.
Sturgis Mayor Mark Carstensen said the community was fortunate to have the group show up.
"We were blessed to have the amount of manpower they provided," he said.
Mark Madison, Director of Disaster Relief for the region, said a request was made for assistance and their group responded.
The Southern Baptist Regional Representative Larry Thomas of Wichita, Kan., did an assessment of the need and deemed the Northern Hills a place of need following the storm, Madison said.
"We were there from the week after the storm until the week before Thanksgiving," Madison said. "We ran 350 job requests that came through the 211 system."
The group had 35 volunteers come to the area each week.
The city helped find housing and many local churches fed the volunteers that chose Sturgis as their base of operations.
Madison said the volunteers from the region which is comprised of Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois, Idaho and Utah, have been busy this year. They responded to fires and floods in Colorado and tornadoes in Oklahoma.
"It's been one disaster after another this year," Madison said.
Madison lauded the cooperation the group received from city, county and state emergency officials.
"They were all so very supportive," he said. "It was an excellent deployment."
The group set up operations at the Sturgis Volunteer Fire Department and shuttled volunteers throughout the Northern Hills.
"Sturgis was the center for us," Madison said.
But volunteers helped cut and clean up downed trees in the communities of Spearfish, Lead-Deadwood, Black Hawk, Rapid City and Belle Fourche.
"We received such a warm welcome from everyone. We felt truly appreciated," he said.
Also, the city announced it has named Brenda Vasknetz the Outstanding Employee of 2013.
Vasknetz is Director of the city's Rally and Events Department. She is responsible for coordinating many of the city sponsored events that take place during the year including the Sturgis motorcycle rally.
"According to her fellow employees, Brenda is a hands on person who works side by side with numerous city staff members, community organizations and local businesses to make each and every city sponsored event the best it can possibly be," Ainslie said.
Honorees are chosen each year through a nomination process initiated by city employees and other city representatives.