First Response Program
food and water - damage assessment and cleanup
The First Response Program
The purpose of this program is threefold: to train and equip our youth, to activate the church, and to impact our nation.
Our goal is to send leaders, trained and equipped to respond to crises within the US and then build on that training and experience for further development to send them into more intense situations internationally.
Our organizational vision has always been to use disasters as a means to take the gospel into areas that would otherwise be closed and hostile towards us. We believe it is our responsibility to put our volunteers in the best position to succeed in whatever crisis they respond to and in whatever country that might be.
What we provide in a US Disaster Response
1. Leadership and Command Structure
Qualified and competent leadership to establish stability in a time of crisis,
and to empower the residents of the community to be part of the response.
2. Immediate Nourishment Needs
Food and water distribution by partnering with Blessings of Hope.
3. Initial Cleanup
Volunteers and tools to clear roadways, install tarps on damaged house roofs, and provide damage assessment.
4. Trauma Care – Prayer Support
Prayer and emotional support for traumatized individuals
Why stateside relief?
1. To train our young men and women to respond locally before sending them abroad. To vet and position leaders in their gifts and callings.
2. To activate our local communities by providing churches and businesses with a platform to respond to local disasters.
3. To impact nations around the world, we believe it starts with helping our communities at home.
How will we accomplish it?
We will train and deploy volunteers, equipped with the necessary knowledge and tools to respond to disasters within the United States. We will care for people struck by disaster while preparing the volunteers for international deployment.
When disaster strikes, we will be there to provide emergency relief and to bridge the gap between the needs of the community and the organizations working to meet those needs.
The Response Plan
When disaster strikes, we will respond within 24 hours with a trained, 5 person team. This team will respond with a truck conversion RV, pulling a 32 foot trailer stocked with tools and equipment. We will also deploy a crew cab truck that will be used as a mobile vehicle at the disaster area.
Upon arrival to the disaster area, the RV will be set up as the center of operations. It will function as living quarters and a command center, with two people assigned to staff the command center. These staff members will coordinate with the
Pennsylvania headquarters in addition to being a liason between PCCR and the other agencies and organizations on site. Their first priority will be to dispatch the rest of the team to assess the immediate needs in the area. They will then relay the information to the headquarters and other agencies as needed.
Meeting the food and water needs and opening the roads will be an immediate priority. These include cutting trees, removing debris, and getting the roads opened so the local population and other agencies and organizations can move into the area.
The next priority will be shelter needs, which includes emergency repairs to make some of the houses able to be occupied again. These repairs will involve removing trees off of houses, tarping house roofs, and pumping water out of basements. As the most urgent needs are met, we will set up and facilitate prayer stations at the temporary shelters where the local population is staying.
Within several days of our arrival we will set up base at a location that can handle teams of volunteers. They will arrive and be dispatched by the command center to the needs in the area. We will mobilize the local population to become a part of the response and work alongside our volunteers.
Once the initial needs are met and the situation stabilizes in the disaster area, our work will be discontinued or handed off to organizations focused on rebuilding. The team will wrap up our operation, return to our Pennsylvania headquarters, and prepare for the next response.
the RV Truck & Trailer
I’m the Lead Pastor of the Northside Church of God in Perry, Fl. Hurricane Idalia hit us as a strong category 3 storm. We have never had a direct hit from a hurricane like this in our history. We have experienced outer bands and storms from hurricanes and we have prepared for hurricanes many times. I have personally experienced the effects of hurricanes when I was in ministry in central Florida and have been able to aid other churches but have never been the Lead Pastor of a church that needed assistance. It was such a blessing to have the assistance of Plain Compassion. We were able to host them with a few other groups at our church. It meant so much to our church and to our community to have them in the area so quickly after the storm. Admittedly, having no experience with anything like this, I was very skeptical about a group coming to help for FREE? I asked about the costs involved and verified it several times, because there were several people/companies here that bombarded our community with “help”, but there was always a cost attached and many times they were inflated. I talked to some people who were quoted $12,000 to $20,000 to have their trees trimmed and debris cleaned up.
We were so grateful for the ministries that came and donated their time and resources to help our community. I quickly found out that Plain Compassion was legitimate, and they were here to help. I was able to connect their leaders with several of my church members and many others from the community. Word of mouth quickly spread throughout our community and people with cleanup needs started contacting me to connect them with Plain Compassion. Debris clean-up, roofs tarped, trees trimmed, small repairs… I heard feedback from the community that they were taken care of quickly by this ministry, sometimes the same day or within a couple days at the latest. It was such a great blessing that in the middle of our chaos and mess that we could get help from people who cared. They were the hands and feet of Jesus in action. I feel like I made new friends and cannot put into words how grateful I am to have been a small part of connecting them with our community. I am thankful as a Pastor and we are so thankful as a community and we pray many blessings upon everyone involved in this ministry!
I do not know where we would be without your help!
Thank you and God Bless!!
Pastor David Johnson
Northside Church of God