MUNSTER, Ind. - Steve Conger, pastor of Ridge UMC in Munster, is coordinating flood relief efforts with the Northwest Indiana United Way and other area churches. Those seeking assistance or volunteers wishing to assist in clean-up efforts can call or go directly to one of the two Volunteer Resource Centers (VRC) in Munster and Portage. Conger met recently with pastors in the eastern portion of Lake County and Porter County to share information and resources.

Bonnie Albert, UMVIM coordinator for the North Indiana Conference, reports that the volunteer centers have received numerous flood buckets this past week. She also told e-HUM: Volunteers are still needed to assist with victims of recent flooding in Lake and Porter County.

Can you give a morning or afternoon to do any of the following tasks?

Volunteers are needed to answer phones for a few hours at one of the Volunteer Reception Centers, to go to flooded homes and assess damages, or to organize a work team of three to five people to go a home and help put things back together using the information gathered by the assessment of needs.

Homes are ready for rebuilding or rehab. Report to the VRC to get an assignment. The Volunteer Reception Center will provide a form to be completed and then returned to the VRC.

Here are the locations: the Porter County Volunteer Reception Center (6270 Central Avenue, Portage, Ind., phone 219-763-3292) and the Lake County Volunteer Reception Center (9200 Calumet Avenue Suite N 202, Munster, Ind., phone 219-836-5390).

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties for individual assistance. Donations to assist flood relief in the Calumet District can be sent to the North Indiana Conference Service Center, P.O. Box 869, Marion, IN 46952. Memo to Disaster Response Lake/Porter County Flood Relief.