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News

Water Mission’s Disaster Response Team is Ready as Hurricane Season Begins

June 1 will mark the official start of what is expected to be an active hurricane season in the Atlantic. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts an 85% chance of an above-normal season with a forecasted range of 17 to 25 storms.  

Water Mission’s Senior Director of Disaster Response, Brock Kreitzburg, and his  Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) have been preparing for this season for months. “We are always monitoring the world for disasters and looking for patterns,” Kreitzburg explained. Safe water is critical in the days following a disaster, so the DART constantly observes weather conditions and ensures equipment and personnel are ready to deploy at a moment’s notice.  

Brock Kreitzburg helps assemble a safe water system following an earthquake in Turkey.

“It is important for us to respond to disasters quickly, because many communities have no access to water following a disaster,” said Kreitzburg. “This means we have to be ready to deploy so that we can provide relief in 24-to-48 hours after a disaster strikes.”  

This goal requires preparation and planning. Water Mission has pre-positioned equipment in its Charleston, South Carolina facility that is ready to be loaded and shipped during a disaster response. “We have Living Water Treatment Systems, reverse osmosis systems, hygiene kits, and P&G water purification supplies that are ready to go when we respond to a disaster,” Kreitzburg explained. “We also have a safe water system that can fit in a suitcase and be carried by hand to provide rapid access to safe water.” 

Water Mission DART members assemble a safe water system.

In addition to equipment, a critical component of disaster response is people. “We have a roster of individuals that are trained and ready to deploy to disasters around the world,” said Kreitzburg. “We can deploy systems to a disaster location where we have individuals already on the ground that can receive those systems and install them in communities in need.” Water Mission has continued to expand its DART roster, and applications are open to those interested in joining the team. 

In 2023, Water Mission served over 281,000 people through seven disaster responses. Looking forward, Water Mission’s Disaster Response team has a lofty goal to build the capacity to respond to either six large-scale disasters in a year or three at once. While progress is being made, we still need your help.  

“When a disaster happens, there are many ways you can help,” Kreitzburg said. “You can pray for us. You can share with your friends and on social media about Water Mission and how we are making an impact in areas affected by disasters. Lastly, you can give financially and help support the work that we are doing around the world.” 

If you are interested in learning more about Water Mission’s disaster response efforts or supporting our work, please visit watermission.org. Our team is currently responding to devastating flooding in East Africa. Learn more or support that response by going to watermission.org/eastafrica.