U.S. Disaster Relief

In addition to its international relief efforts, Samaritan’s Purse mobilizes staff and equipment and enlists thousands of volunteers to provide emergency aid to victims of tornadoes, hurricanes, wildfires, floods and other natural disasters in the United States. After an initial response, Samaritan’s Purse often stays behind to rebuild and restore houses for families in need.

Overview

The Samaritan’s Purse U.S. Disaster Relief team maintains a constant state of readiness— monitoring weather conditions and emerging natural threats around the nation in order to respond at a moment’s notice to help victims of natural disasters.

Samaritan’s Purse’s U.S.-focused relief efforts are based in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, some 30 miles east of the organization’s main headquarters in Boone. Staff remain ready to respond to disaster at a moment’s notice with a fleet of disaster response vehicles, including eight Disaster Relief Units, pre-positioned in three strategic locations—North Wilkesboro; Dallas, Texas; and Fullerton, California. These tractor-trailers are stocked with heavy-duty tarps, generators, chain-saws and other tools to aid in cleanup efforts. Each Disaster Relief Unit also contains a small, built-in office space to serve as local command centers for Samaritan’s Purse recovery efforts.

Deployments

In disaster areas, Samaritan’s Purse always partners with a local church, where it sets up a command center, mobilizes volunteers and serves the community in need.

Once on the ground, Samaritan’s Purse assessment teams begin canvassing hard-hit neighborhoods and talking with victims to let them know help is available.

Samaritan’s Purse and its army of volunteers help families recover after a catastrophe. Depending on the nature of a disaster, volunteers may tear out damaged drywall, remove flooring, put tarps on damaged roofs, remove debris and help homeowners salvage personal belongings.

Disaster relief teams are made up of staff and volunteers. Many of the volunteers have received classroom and hands-on training, and they travel across the U.S. with Samaritan’s Purse to help homeowners impacted by natural disasters.

In 2019, Samaritan’s Purse launched Team Patriot—an initiative that provides Operation Heal Our Patriots participants the opportunity to volunteer in hard-hit communities following natural disasters. Some 40 U.S. military veterans and their spouses helped hurting families recover in the wake of storms this year.

Since 1998, Samaritan’s Purse has responded to 238 domestic disasters in 38 states, bringing aid to some 50,000 families.

In 2019, some 15,000 volunteers served more than 46,900 hours with Samaritan’s Purse, helping more than 4,600 U.S. families recover from disasters.

Samaritan’s Purse responded to 16 disasters in 10 states in 2019, including tornadoes in Alabama, Missouri and Ohio, a tropical storm in Texas, and flooding in Nebraska, Oklahoma and Michigan.

Samaritan’s Purse, headed by Franklin Graham, is an international Christian relief and evangelism organization working in more than 100 countries to provide aid to victims of war, disease, disaster, poverty, famine and persecution. For more information, visit SamaritansPurse.org.