Fact Sheet: 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.
The Samaritan's Purse U.S. Disaster Relief team maintains a constant state of readiness—monitoring weather conditions 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 members in North Wilkesboro maintain a fleet of disaster response vehicles, including five tractor-trailers—known as Disaster Relief Units—stocked with heavy-duty tarps, generators, chain-saws and other tools to aid in cleanup efforts. These Disaster Relief Units, which each include a small, built-in office space, also serve as local command centers for Samaritan's Purse recovery efforts.
- 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 storm victims to let them know help is available.
- Samaritan's Purse and its army of volunteers help families recover after the storm. 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 travel all across the U.S. with Samaritan's Purse to help homeowners impacted by natural disasters.
- Since 1998, Samaritan's Purse has responded to 205 domestic disasters in 35 states, helping more than 39,000 families.
- In 2017, 20,860 volunteers served more than 492,000 hours with Samaritan's Purse, helping some 5,600 U.S. families recover from disasters.
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.