Salvation Army emergency disaster services personnel responded after a series of tornadoes ripped through the Midwest this weekend killing at least 10 people in Missouri and leaving destruction across Kansas and Illinois. Storms continue to threaten today and The Salvation Army is prepared to respond as needed.
In Springfield, IL, The Salvation Army has dispatched a relief team to conduct a needs assessment after storms injured 19 people, forced the closing of most major roads and caused structural damage throughout the city. Four additional Salvation Army EDS units are on stand-by as severe storms continue to plague the area.
Lawrence received the brunt of the storms’ destruction in Kansas, including damaging about 60 percent of the buildings on the University of Kansas campus. The Salvation Army corps and community center (center for worship and service) also was damaged by the storm and was without power for more than 20 hours. Salvation Army personnel continue to provide cold beverages to utility workers who are tirelessly working to restore electrical power to the city.
Missouri was hardest hit by the violent storms. At least 10 people were killed as the storms marched through the area and many homes, including a stretch along a 20-mile path south of St. Louis, were destroyed. The Salvation Army has emergency disaster services vehicles (canteens) stationed in Springfield, Clover and St. Mary, Mo., one of the hardest-hit towns. In addition, Salvation Army canteens and EDS personnel are serving in Pettis and Randolph counties.
“We are actively working in affected areas and meeting needs by utilizing our canteens and local volunteers,” said Jim Shiels, who is coordinating The Salvation Army’s emergency disaster relief effort in Missouri. “Our assessment teams are talking to people and figuring out how we can assist in meeting long-term needs.”