2020 was the most active Atlantic hurricane season on record, with 30 named storms. In the span of about two months, the Gulf Coast was hit by 4 major hurricanes: Laura, Sally, Delta, and Zeta. These storms caused widespread destruction throughout multiple states. In response to these storms, Matthew 25: Ministries shipped 38 truckloads of aid throughout the impacted region, containing more than 850,000 pounds of disaster relief supplies.
In November, Hurricanes Eta and Iota made back-to-back landfall in Central America, hitting only two weeks apart. These storms swept through multiple countries, causing widespread flooding and devastating mudslides. Matthew 25: Ministries shipped aid throughout the region, including over 375,000 pounds of personal care items, household and cleaning products, disaster blankets, and more.
Additionally, Matthew 25: Ministries responded to catastrophic flooding in Michigan–described as a 500-year flood event–and Mississippi, tornadoes in Tennessee and other areas across the South and eastern United States, the Midwest derecho, and wildfires that devastated California and the Pacific Northwest.
After Hurricanes Eta and Iota, Matthew 25 worked with trusted partners in Nicaragua to rush aid to areas severely impacted by the back-to-back hurricanes. These partners rented a semi, purchased and hand-loaded supplies and drove them through torrential rain, landslides, washed out roads, over rickety wooden bridges and through unstable areas into affected regions. The team went from location to location to ensure that even remote areas with limited access received the food, clean water, blankets and cleaning supplies they needed, offloading supplies by hand with the help of local volunteers. In some instances, the areas were so remote and the flooding so severe that the only way to get supplies to the recipients was via fishing boats and canoes. The team also provided supplies such as rice, beans, sugar, oil and plastic to centers providing shelter for victims who were forced to evacuate. In some communities, our team provided the only aid they had received since the hurricane made landfall.
The team assembled 1,000 emergency supply bags with bleach, plastic, rope, sugar, coffee, rice, pinol, soy, soap, candles, matches, coffee, gas, face masks, material for blankets and rice and passed them out to communities in desperate need along with 2,000 pounds of oil and 8,000 pounds of water. The team also helped with area clean up, cutting down damaged trees, clearing roads and installing rubber covered metal ropes in communities cut off from land, to help people cross flooded or created rivers in case of emergency.
For over 30 years, Matthew 25 has demonstrated a tireless dedication to serving the poorest of the poor and disaster victims, exhibiting consistent growth, maintaining the highest standards of efficiency and effectiveness and helping millions of people each year. As a disaster response organization, Matthew 25: Ministries is always planning and preparing to respond in the most effective manner during times of humanitarian crisis.
Matthew 25: Ministries continues to expand and diversify distribution activities to more efficiently and effectively fulfill our mission of caring for the poorest of the poor and disaster victims. Matthew 25: Ministries works with partners to develop additional distribution programs that will fill gaps in current distribution activities and that will enhance distribution diversity and mobility, especially in disaster scenarios.