Life for the Morgan family of Bastrop changed abruptly this past September when a wildfire that swept through their neighborhood destroyed their home, two vehicles, and all of their clothing. While their family and friends stepped in to help with food, clothing, and shelter, a hardship grant from Lutheran Social Services Disaster Response (LSSDR)gave them immediate financial assistance to begin rebuilding their lives. With their most basic needs met, this family was given the opportunity to begin to heal from this tragedy.
Through the generosity of LCMS World Relief and Human Care (LCMS WR-HC), LSSDR has been able to alleviate immediate financial hardship for many families like the Morgans, serving those whose losses from the wildfires have been most devastating. Initially, LCMS World Relief provided $25,000 for immediate assistance, then followed with an additional $25,000 to aid in long-term recovery efforts.
Mark Minick, senior vice president for External Relations/LSSDR said, “The $50,000 grant money from LCMS has been instrumental in our ability to help so many, in such a timely manner. It is expected that the response will continue for a minimum of two years. As in any disaster, the needs of the community will far outweigh resources. LSSDR is grateful for the support of partners such as LCMS World Relief and Human Care.”
LSSDR has been able to serve more than 250 people directly through emergency assistance, support of local children’s programs (homeschooled children who lost school supplies and books), spiritual and emotional care, and volunteer efforts. Among those aided were farm families who have been doubly affected by the fires and severe drought condition. Additionally, hundreds more have been served through the coordination, collection, and distribution of goods, as well as volunteer coordination and initial case management support.
LSSDR, a ministry of Lutheran Social Services of the South, provides emergency assistance to disaster survivors in Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma.
The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS) WR-HC is a ministry of hope that reaches out in mercy and compassion to those in need worldwide, and awards grants to domestic and international partners for projects that benefit communities in need.