What is Disaster Response?

The Disaster Response Ministry (DRM) of the Susquehanna Conference, the United Methodist Church promotes readiness for, response to, and relief and recovery from disasters. In partnership with the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), we provide hope through a caring, Christian presence, to those who are experiencing loss.

The DRM provides for the physical, social, spiritual and emotional needs of individuals and families through caring ministry. We do so while affirming the dignity and worth and involving them in their own recovery, enabling them to take ownership and responsibility for relief and recovery work. We honor the many cultural differences that exist throughout the world. The DRM delivers assistance without regard to race, religion, politics, or gender. And, we collaborate in disaster response ministry and mission with other religious and secular organizations.



  • Promote disaster readiness through planning, training, and equipping to ensure congregations, districts, ministries, and agencies in the Susquehanna Conference are prepared to respond. (READINESS)
  • Utilize the connectional system of the United Methodist Church to support an appropriate and effective response to disasters within the Susquehanna Conference. (RESPONSE)
  • Provide immediate relief to alleviate short-term community suffering caused by disasters and fulfill physical, social, spiritual and emotional needs to assist individuals and families in the long-term recovery process. (RELIEF/RECOVERY)
  • Facilitate an assessment of the disaster response and initiate the restoration of the Conference. (REVIEW/RESTORATION)



  • To work cooperatively with the appropriate conference units, ecumenical bodies, advocacy for, and assistance with ministries for disaster recovery. (COOPERATION)
  • To provide direct communication from the conference to the national offices of the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and United Methodist Volunteers in Mission to obtain needed resources and assistance for disaster-stricken areas inside the conference, or to provide available resources and assistance to areas in need outside of the conference. (COMMUNICATION)
  • To resource and equip local United Methodist churches as they assist their communities and individuals to prepare, respond and recover from disaster. (COORDINATION)
  • To work with other organizations and groups to provide relief for persons in the community who are affected by a disaster. (COLLABORATION)



  • Provide RELIEF to a community that is suffering as the result of a disaster.

              Revealing God’s protections (Psalm 20:1)

              Embracing a community in need (James 2:16)

              Loving unconditionally (John 13:34)

              Introducing compassion (2 Corinthians 1:3-7)

              Emphasizing hope (Romans 15:13)

              Fostering restoration, physically and spiritually (1 Peter 5:10)

Flo Waybright
Conference Secretary, Global Ministries

Michelle Schwartzman
Volunteers In Mission Coordinator