Authors Kathy Haueisen and Carol Flores have personal and professional experience with tropical storms and hurricanes that have roared through the Gulf Coast region
9 September, 2017 – Houston, TX- Author Kathryn Haueisen lives in Houston. Houston is underwater. She’s been through this experience before with Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Ike. She knows something about what her community is going to go through for the next – who knows how long. That is why she helped former Bishop Paul Blom write God in the Raging Waters and then co-authored A Ready Hope: Effective Disaster Ministry for Congregations with her daughter Carol Flores. Flores began a career in disaster response several months after Katrina made landfall. She worked with Lutheran Social Services of the South, InterFaith Ministries, and Texas Health and Human Services.
Both books describe the phenomenal influx of dollars and volunteers who show up on the scene to start the very long road to recovery. “I learned how much I didn’t know about how volunteers swarm in like a team of busy bees to help distressed folks overcome unbearable challenges. I soon realized those on the receiving side or giving side of the story need to know,” says Haueisen.
Each disaster is unique. As they say in the Disaster Response world, “If you’ve seen one disaster, you’ve seen one disaster.” There are some predictable events that will happen. It is already happening in Houston. While the rain was still coming down and the water levels all over town were still rising the predictable disaster response cycle began unfolding.
People are eager to deliver used clothing and household goods but there isn’t yet a system in place to store and distribute them. The media has run out of new things to report so they repeat the same stories repeatedly – sticking microphones in faces of families desperate to find a missing pet or comfort a distraught child. National organizations and leaders second-guess decisions made by local leaders under the most trying of times.
“We’ve seen this before. Disasters bring out the very best we have to offer our fellow citizens – and sadly, we also attract the worst of the opportunists who gouge and deceive desperate people,” said Haueisen.
Both books – A Ready Hope: Effective Disaster Ministry for Congregations and God in the Raging Waters are available at Amazon.com. A portion of sales from either book will be donated to disaster relief organizations responding to Hurricane Harvey.
Kathryn Haueisen, author, is a retired Lutheran pastor who worked with a disaster response agency for six months following three previous hurricane-related disasters in Texas and Louisiana.
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