Methodist Healthcare Ministries assists Hurricane Harvey relief efforts and donates $100,000 to Rio Texas Conference’s Disaster Response Fund
Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc. – a private, faith-based not-for-profit with headquarters in Bexar County and programs in 74 South Texas counties (including those severely impacted by Hurricane Harvey) – has donated $100,000 to the Rio Texas Conference's Disaster Response Fund. Beyond the donation to the Rio Texas Conference, Methodist Healthcare Ministries has also deployed health care staff, supplies and other resources to the effort.
"Our mission calls us to serve the underserved, in particular in times of need," said Jennifer Knoulton, director of regional operations at Methodist Healthcare Ministries. "It's important we provide support to the communities in our service area that were directly impacted by the storm. This donation to the Rio Texas Conference is the best way to ensure our resources have the greatest impact and help meet the needs of the communities we live in, work in and have deeply-rooted ties."
Methodist Healthcare Ministries' 74-county service area mirrors the same geographical area of the Rio Texas Conference of The United Methodist Church. The donation will assist the Rio Texas Conference's Disaster Response Committee, comprised of trained early response teams equipped to assist local communities after a disaster. Assistance includes expert advice to help communities with immediate needs or recovery plans; distribution of cleanup kits and health kits, volunteer recruitment, home repair, and spiritual and emotional care. The committee works closely with the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD).
"The Rio Texas Conference has been a critical partner to us in serving the unmet health care needs of communities that were already in distress before the disaster," said Knoulton. "The Church has had, and will continue to have, an important role in healing the communities impacted by the devastation."
Robert Schnase, Bishop of the Rio Texas Annual Conference, stated, "The Rio Texas Conference deeply appreciates the generosity and compassion of Methodist Healthcare Ministries as expressed in this donation. I look forward to our continued cooperation."
Methodist Healthcare Ministries also directed an additional sum of $11,000 to its Wesley Nurse program for hurricane relief efforts to 11 churches. The following United Methodist churches received $1,000 each: Victoria, Goliad, Flower Bluff, Sinton, Corpus Christi, Rockport, Karnes City, New Braunfels, Boerne, Del Rio, Uvalde.
Relief efforts in South Texas include:
- Medical, dental, behavioral and spiritual health care, as well as nursing and case management, at shelters in Bexar, Kerr, Uvalde, La Salle, Nueces, Val Verde, Travis, Kleberg, San Patricio, Aransas, Jim Wells, Goliad, Victoria, Jackson, Gonzales, Calhoun, Bastrop and Caldwell counties.
- Direct health care services by physicians, nurses and behavioral health staff from Methodist Healthcare Ministries' Wesley Health & Wellness Center, Bishop Ernest T. Dixon, Jr. Clinic and School Based Health Centers. Transportation to the clinics is also offered.
- Donations of durable medical equipment and health care supplies (walkers, canes, etc.)
- Connecting families, assessing patients and addressing health care needs through our Wesley Nurse program. Nearly 30 Methodist Healthcare Ministries' regional staff members, including Wesley Nurses and Community Counselors who work directly out of United Methodist churches, have been on the ground and will continue to support community recovery efforts in various South Texas counties.
- Medication assistance as needed.
- Working alongside the Rio Texas Conference of the United Methodist Church to understand where short- and long-term resources need to be focused.
- Working with relief organizations and case managers on-site at hurricane relief locations to determine how we can help to transition those needing ongoing care into our network, as appropriate.
Methodist Healthcare Ministries extends thoughts and prayers to all who have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey, especially patients and clients who may have been injured or whose homes may have been damaged during the storms. Methodist Healthcare Ministries is also grateful to staff members working hard to help those in need in affected areas, especially those helping others despite damage to their own homes.
Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc. is a private, faith-based not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating access to health care for the uninsured through direct services, community partnerships and strategic grant-making in 74 counties across South Texas. The mission of the organization is "Serving Humanity to Honor God" by improving the physical, mental and spiritual health of those least served in the Rio Texas Conference area of The United Methodist Church. The mission also includes Methodist Healthcare Ministries' one-half ownership of the Methodist Healthcare System, the largest healthcare system in South Texas, which creates a unique avenue to ensure that it continues to be a benefit to the community by providing quality care to all and charitable care when needed. For more information, visit www.mhm.org.