Among those whose lives have been affected by natural disasters are many school-age children who have witnessed the loss and destruction of their home and favorite possessions; a challenge at any age.
This year, Liberty’s Lutheran Disaster Response- Eastern Pennsylvania, (LDR) has played a significant role in the recovery of areas throughout Pennsylvania that were devastated by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. Many dedicated volunteers rolled up their sleeves to clean out mud and debris, run electrical wires and hang dry wall for more than 85 families.
Camp Noah, a “traveling” day camp, a ministry designed by Lutheran Social Services Minnesota, has been offered to children who have experienced a disaster in eastern Pennsylvania. Its purpose is to put smiles back on the faces of these young survivors.
The camp days are full of activities, play, discussions and fun in the hopes that each camper will feel less isolated and have the opportunity to share their feelings.
This summer, volunteer Diane Allen- Harkins, brought Camp Noah to the Athens/Sayre area in Bradford County where more than 800 families continue to recover from the 2011 flooding. Diane, the volunteer site coordinator of the 45 campers says,
“Every parent told me they loved what Camp Noah was giving to their children, especially the quilts.”
Gifts given to Lutheran Disaster Response-Eastern Pennsylvania will support recovery efforts for Hurricane Sandy along with our ongoing efforts in the 19 counties of Eastern Pennsylvania that are still recovering from last year’s flooding.
Since 2006, Lutheran Congregational Services has collected 1,700 quilts for Camp Noah, including 268 in the past year. At an average of five feet per quilt that adds up to 1.6 miles! A great accomplishment, but even greater are the smiles on the faces of the children who received them, and the volunteers who made them.