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CRWRC Responds to Destruction in Central Florida

February 5, 2007

The Christian Reformed World Relief Committee (CRWRC) and other local emergency organizations are planning a response to the destruction caused by a tornado that ripped through Central Florida early Friday morning.

The early season storm killed 19 and damaged or destroyed more than 800 homes across Lake County and three surrounding counties. More than 1,000 families were left without power across affected area and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has declared a state of emergency.
CRWRC’s Disaster Response Services (DRS) is dispatching a Rapid Response Team from its West Michigan central office today to assess damage and assist with initial relief efforts.

Harold and Marlyce Mulder, volunteer managers for DRS who reside in Central Florida, have met with local emergency management and other response organizations, including the Florida Interfaith Networking in Disaster (FIND), to organize a response to this devastating storm.

DRS Director, Bill Adams, says that CRWRC is already present in Central Florida and the Panhandle in an ongoing, long-term rebuilding response to Hurricanes Charley, Frances and Jeanne (all in 2004) and other storms.

“We have not forgotten Florida while responding to the catastrophic devastation of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita along the Gulf Coast,” Adams says.

CRWRC is the relief and development arm of the Christian Reformed Church, a Protestant denomination of more than 1,000 congregations in the United States and Canada.

Financial support for CRWRC’s Florida tornado response can be given by calling 1-800-55-CRWRC in the U.S. or 1-800-730-3490 in Canada, or donate online at Checks should be made out to "CRWRC," earmarked "Spring Storms 2007," and sent to 2850 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, Grand Rapids, MI, 49560 or P.O. Box 5070 Stn LCD 1, Burlington, ON, L7R 3Y8.

MEDIA: To arrange an interview with Andrew Ryskamp, director of CRWRC-US, call Beth DeGraff at 616-648-7821.