The floods may seem long gone and out of the news, however volunteers are still needed to assist residents in northwest, far northwest and the central parts of Indiana.

In far northwest Indiana, including Lake, LaPorte and Porter counties, volunteer centers are located in Munster and Portage. United Way, a partner with Ridge UMC and other area churches, helps operate two United Way Volunteer Reception Centers at:

  • Lake Business Center at 9200 Calumet Avenue in Suite N202 in Munster (Between Pepsi and Charlie's Ale House). Phone 219-836-5390.
  • Old Dollar General building at 6270 Central Avenue in Portage. This site will be closing by the end of November.
  • Volunteer groups to assist in recovery efforts, need to direct calls to Chris Eller Esparza at 219-836-5390, cell 773-968-8600 or 219-923-2302 ext 311 for an assignment to work with a family. Volunteer work applications and information plus assignments can be faxed or e-mailed in advance.
  • The center will not be open the week of Thanksgiving. In December, the center will be open on Saturdays.
  • Center hours and work days are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Volunteer Case Managers also are needed. Contact the Center if you are interested.

Volunteers are needed for the following:

  1. Work at the Volunteer Reception Centers in Portage and in Munster. The Centers will be mobilizing volunteers to begin the cleanup of residents with no insurance and the first priority will be seniors and Disabled.
  2. People willing to form a team of two to assess the damage.
  3. Volunteer teams to work with residents to clean up their homes.
  4. Volunteer team leaders: for people who have had experience in disaster response, you are ready to be a team leader.

Across central Indiana, volunteer work teams are still needed to assist in flood recovery efforts. For work team schedules in the Columbus area, contact Angie Huebel at the United Way of Bartholomew County, 1531 13th Street, Columbus, IN 47201. E-mail ahuebel@uwbarthco.org or phone 812-314-2344. For other communities, contact Jenni Walker, South Indiana Resource Administrator. E-mail jenniwalker@mac.com.  Phone 812-893-1760.

South Indiana Disaster Response needs churches in flooded areas to provide housing for volunteers from other areas in the state while those volunteers work with flood survivors. If your congregation is willing to host volunteers, contact Jenni Walker.

In Northwest Indiana around the communities of Remington, Delphi and Monticello which hit by floods in January, volunteers are needed. Those interested in volunteering their services to flood survivors in northwest Indiana can contact Alan H. Welch, director, DANI-Disaster Assistance for Northwest Indiana 1021 N 10th Street, Lafayette, IN 47904-1947 or phone 765-742-4718. Call toll-free 877-773-0249 or send e-mail to welchah@gmail.com. DANI information is available by logging on to http://daniflood.org.

In related news, North Indiana United Methodists have contributed $62,881 and the South Indiana United Methodists have contributed $62,257 to date both for Indiana flood relief and recovery efforts.