17 Feb Winter Storm Relief – Need Help/Give Help
I just wanted to take a moment and update you on the last 24 hours at Mosaic Church.
Before I even begin to give you that update, I just want to first thank everyone who has contributed in some way to helping those in need, in ways that we have seen and that we haven’t. From the inside, it has been truly amazing and deeply touching to see how, once more, in a crisis, we are able to serve those in need.
A few updates, quickly:
- We were put on both the city’s warming and shelter lists, and started receiving people at around 11 am today. People have been brought here by Fire Department, neighbors, and volunteers from organizations who have heard we have space.
- Our staff has delivered groceries to roughly 20 families across the city. This is slow, painstaking and dangerous work, but we have thankfully not had any accidents. The roads have improved as the day has gone on. Finding the groceries needed has been the biggest challenge.
- We have relocated probably 30 families within our church to houses of fellow Mosaic members who are retaining power on at least a semi-consistent basis.
- We have had strangers from the surrounding area drop off food and blankets at our facilities, and have thanked us for being open to the community.
- Tonight, it looks like we will house around 20 people overnight, in addition to Mosaic staff that are staying here, from the elderly to singles to families. It seems the group that has been hit the hardest has been people living in apartment complexes, who have already been without power for days, and then their pipes burst and their apartments flood and have nowhere to go and have lost everything.
- Another group that is always hit hard by extreme weather is the homeless community. Leah Hargrave, one of our deacons, and her team of volunteers have fed and housed 200 people for the night tonight. This is incredible, and my understanding is that there will be a news report about her work tonight on KVUE.
- I have been in touch with Austin City Council, and they have thanked us for our efforts. There are many churches that have been helping, and the name of Jesus has been glorified because of it.
- Our members have chipped in by driving their four-wheel-drive trucks (long live Texas!), cooking soup and driving it up here to feed those who come in off the streets.
- We have retained power in our facility, but we lost water earlier today. We have more than enough drinking water but are down to one toilet that can be used, due to plumbing issues.
- There are so many stories we have from today alone about ways we have helped people, fed people, cared for people, and the spiritual repercussions of this are beginning to show.
All that to say, THANK YOU, again, to everyone who has served their community, checked on their neighbor, received a stranger despite COVID risks, and sacrificed in some way.
If you’re asking, how can I help? You can help in two ways:
- You can give financial assistance at this link here. This will go for funding groceries for our members, and for meeting the needs of the community after all this has passed. As you read earlier, especially those in apartment complexes are going to be in great need once things thaw and they have to piece their lives back together.
- Tomorrow may bring greater need than today. The longer people go without power, the harder it gets and the more likely they are to lose water and have pipes burst as well. We may need to acquire bedding and additional food should some situations we are keeping an eye on break badly. All that to say, we will be in touch as soon as we are able about tomorrow.
Also, if you are reading this and have a need, or if you know someone who does–if you need food, transportation, financial assistance or shelter, please let us know here. We have many, many people from Mosaic ready and able to serve and assist you. It would be their joy!