January 23, 2014
By Aaron Weaver
DECATUR, Ga. — The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and Metro Baptist Church/Rauschenbusch Metro Ministries were recognized January 9 by the New York Disaster Interfaith Services (NYDIS) for their involvement in efforts to meet unmet needs in the wake of Hurricane Sandy as part of the New York City Sandy Unmet Needs Roundtable.
CBF and Metro Baptist, a CBF partner congregation located in the Hells Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, previously made a three-year commitment of $125,000 to help families still recovering from Hurricane Sandy, the superstorm that hit the Eastern United States in late October 2012.
Other “donor partners” recognized alongside CBF and Metro Baptist included: American Red Cross, Convoy of Hope, Home Depot, Islamic Relief USA, K.I.D.S. Foundation, LSSNY-LDR, Steven Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, United Way of New York City and the Salvation Army. These organizations together have pledged more than $9 million to the recovery efforts.
Tommy Deal, CBF U.S. disaster response coordinator, and Tiffany Triplett Henkel, pastor of Metro Baptist Church and executive director of Rauschenbusch Metro Ministries, accepted the award at NYDIS’s annual meeting and partnership awards banquet.
“Through a proven system of case management, NYDIS assures that those impacted by Hurricane Sandy with unmet needs will be helped. This is good stewardship of the gifts entrusted to CBF Disaster Response by our Fellowship family,” Deal said. “We are proud to stand beside Metro Baptist Church and other partners to reach out to those still hurting and bring some light back into this dark time.”
After Hurricane Sandy hit, Metro Baptist members helped with feeding stations and distributed boxes of supplies. The church also served as a respite center for volunteers serving six-day shifts in the area.
“In the weeks and months since Superstorm Sandy hit, our congregation has been reminded that sustaining recovery and rebuilding can only happen through collaboration,” Henkel said.
“We are so grateful for the individuals and churches throughout our Baptist networks who responded to the call for supplies, prayers and donations for relief efforts in our community. And Metro’s ongoing partnership with CBF and NYDIS will ensure long-term recovery needs are met for the most vulnerable individuals affected by this storm.”
The NYC Sandy Unmet Needs Roundtable aims to raise $20 million to help those whose insurance, savings, personal resources and government assistance fell short of what was needed to rebuild. Those affected by Hurricane Sandy submit an application along with documentation to the Roundtable, which then awards funds on behalf of the “donor partners” such as CBF and Metro Baptist.
The Roundtable is convened and managed by NYDIS in collaboration with the Human Services Council of New York and case management agencies — including both those within the federal Disaster Case Management program and other community-based case management providers. It helps impacted individuals or households after all other resources have been exhausted with needs such as rent, basic utilities, relocation, transportation and debt management.
Stephen Reeves, CBF’s associate coordinator for partnerships and advocacy, offered his thanks for the leadership of Deal, Henkel and Metro Baptist Church.
“What an honor for CBF Disaster Response and one of our churches to be recognized alongside so many other respected organizations and corporations,” Reeves said. “We are proud and thankful for the compassionate work of the folks at Metro Baptist as well as Tommy Deal for his leadership. This partnership represents a perfect example of how much we can accomplish by working together with the local church, government officials and other faith-based and corporate entities. A cooperative spirit produces magnified results!”
CBF is a fellowship of Baptist Christians and churches who share a passion for the Great Commission and a commitment to Baptist principles of faith and practice. The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.