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Written by Kevin Cox   
Tuesday, 15 April 2014 15:48


Do you know the difference between a severe thunderstorm watch and a severe thunderstorm warning?

A severe thunderstorm watch means that the potential exists for the development of thunderstorms which may produce large hail or damaging winds. When a watch is issued, you should go about your normal activities, but keep an eye to the sky and an ear to the National Weather Service's weather radio or local radio and television stations for further updates and possible warnings.

A severe thunderstorm warning, on the other hand, means that a severe thunderstorm is occurring or is imminent based on doppler radar information. You should move indoors to a place of safety. Schools should think about delaying departure of buses, and should take quick action to delay outdoor sports activities, etc.

The term severe refers to hail that is dime size, 0.75 inches in diameter or larger, and/or wind gusts to 58 mph or more. Although lightning can be deadly it is not a criterion for what the National Weather Service defines as severe since any ordinary thunderstorm can produce a lot of lightning. Also, excessive rainfall may lead to flash flooding, but heavy rain is not a criterion for the term severe. Severe strictly refers to hail at least 3/4 of an inch in diameter or wind gusts of at least 58 mph.

If hail golfball size or larger is falling, it indicates that a storm is very well organized and likely has a rotating updraft. Any storm producing giant hail should be watched closely for signs of a possible tornado.

A tornado watch, like a severe thunderstorm watch, means that conditions are favorable for severe thunderstorms to form, but it also means that a few storms may be capable of producing a tornado. A tornado warning is the ultimate in severe warnings, it means that a tornado is either occurring or imminent based on radar. You should take cover immediately.
Used by permission from NOAA

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 April 2014 15:49
March Update
Written by Kevin Cox   
Monday, 17 March 2014 15:43

Calling all Chaplains, Pastors, Lay Clergy and Christian Counselors!
HCRN has always focused on the spiritual needs of our families that God has brought to us. This year we are starting a new program for men and woman who are blessed with the gift of counseling. From now on every time we serve a community we will be providing counselors as well. Our good friends at Samaritans Purse have been a great example and encouragement to all of the Faith-Based Disaster Response Organizations by partnering with it's sister organization Billy Graham Association and meeting the spiritually needs while Samaritans focuses on the physical. 
HCRN has done somewhat the same by preparing our volunteers to do both.Our volunteers have done a great job but, we have found that many would like to spend more time with the families focusing on the spiritual needs but feel the urgency to make necessary repairs leaving them no time to do a great job of both. We hear you loud and clear! So it is with this intent that we want to begin a new chapter in the way we serve. This doesn't mean that we want our volunteers to stop sharing. On the contrary! We want to be more intentional in our response to ensure that we are able to make great use of what little time we have with our families in need. In the emergency phase we will be doing door to door assessments with an estimator and a counselor and in the response phase every family will receive a home visit.
If this sounds like something you feel God is calling you to be a part of please contact Kevin Cox at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it so that you can join one of our training sessions.


Disaster Preparedness Spotlight

Springtime is almost here, and with that brings harsh weather.
Are you Ready?

Here are some helpful preparedness tips;

  • Have you reviewed your insurance policy.
  • Did you remember to change the batteries in your smoke detector.
  • Now is the time to refresh your 72 hour kit and swap-out items that may be expired. Including, meds, first aid items, batteries, water, baby foods, water, corrective eye-wear, family contact update and any new changes to your evacuation plan.  These are just a few items to remember. Individual kits will vary depending on family needs.
  • Check your foundation for cracks and make repairs as needed.
  • Have you been checking on elderly or disabled neighbors?

For more preparedness information visit

Last Updated on Monday, 17 March 2014 15:48
End of the Year Update
Written by Kevin Cox   
Tuesday, 21 January 2014 18:33


Dear HCRN/VROC Partner


I would like to take a moment and thank each of you for your incredible support over the last 19 months. We have heard many amazing stories and have witnessed God’s hand at work.


During that time we served over 18,000 volunteers, housing 10,234 at Country Lake Christian Retreat. The volunteer workers were made up of teams from 92 churches that came to work on the projects one week at a time. Their faithfulness and commitment working as the body of Christ brought help, hope and healing to the lives of hundreds of Hoosier Families. They are true heroes giving up personal, family, and vacation time for the sake of the call.


Snapshot of the Recovery:

March 2nd two EF-4 tornadoes hit Southern Indiana, covering 49 miles from Pekin to Borden (Daisy Hill), Henryville, Marysville, and across the Ohio Stateline with Daisy Hill, Henryville and Marysville taking the brunt of the storm. Eleven lives were lost and over 1500 families were impacted.


Steve Cain (INVOAD Chair) and I were asked to oversee Volunteer Services on behalf of the Indiana VOAD and the State of Indiana. And, Chris Gilbert (Incoming Chair INVOAD) played a vital role at the State Emergency Operations Center.

Clean up began quickly as volunteer organizations came from all over the country.


A long-term recovery group was established, however; it wasn’t long after, it became clear that there were opportunist trying to ramrod and take control of the Recovery and Faith-Based agencies were sidelined.


So, in May 2012 a Faith-Based group was created, VROC (Volunteers Rebuilding Our Community). It was a collaboration of Hope Crisis Response Network, The Salvation Army, Country Lake Christian Retreat, and UMC Indiana Conference.


Once VROC was established the grant money began to arrive, $783,000 was raised. These funds included a grant received by Hoosier Uplands from the State of Indiana. Separate funding for salaries for a Construction Manager and Case Manager/Volunteer Coordinator came through a grant from UMC Indiana Conference, and Southeast Christian Church. In addition, The Salvation Army gifted new appliances for every new house that included a refrigerator, range, microwave, and washer and dryer. Other major donors included; Northside Christian Church, Grace Lutheran Church, Ohio Valley Presbyterian, Mt. Tabor Presbyterian, and American Commercial Lines. Additional corporate sponsors that provided substantial discounts on product and material and free labor included Benner and Company (HVAC and labor), PC Builders (building material), Fry Plumbing (plumbing supplies and labor), Home Depot (building material), Lowes (building material), and Eisenberg Foundations (foundations and labor).


We invite all to attend the dedication of our last home on Wednesday October 9th, held at 127 Village Lane, Marysville at 4:00pm. We give thanks to the Lord for His provision watching over us, as we brought Hope, Help and Healing to each family.


Many of you know that for HCRN it is all about the relationship. We aren’t here to be homebuilders; we are here to be Kingdom Builders. During this project we saw several come to Christ, many rededicate their lives to Christ, and we had the privilege to baptize new believers. And we continue to rejoice in the healing of Ruth Greenwood from cancer.


As part of relationship building we dedicated Thursday Nights as Family Night. This gave the Volunteers the opportunity to share a meal with the families they assisted during the week. The volunteers enjoyed the time of sharing and in some cases meeting “their” family for the first time, as many of the homeowners worked during the day. Thursday Night was also a time to share the word of God and to bring encouragement to the families and volunteers.


We are very thankful and could not have completed this project without the help of several individuals: Kevin Moss who did an outstanding job as construction manager overseeing all of the construction projects. Roxanne Haley, from the New Albany Salvation Army, for her incredible bookkeeping and funds management of the projects. Honnalora Hubbard, Kyla Moss, Lauren McKay for coordinating volunteers. Brenda Ooley, one of the finest advocates I have ever had the pleasure to work with. Brenda, following the Lord’s calling, joined HCRN full time in April of this year. She is the executive director of our newest project City of Hope for Kids, a children’s ministry created to assist children impacted by disaster. Pastor Jack Cormack for his leadership from our Presbyterian Partnership. And last but not least, my good friend Jim Byerly, the interim chair of UMC Indiana Conference for his faithfulness, encouragement, and help in the funding of VROC.



Total Dollars Raised: $783,000 Total Dollars Spent: $698,000

Volunteers Served: 18,000 + Volunteers Housed: 10,234

Volunteer Hours: 141,621 In-Kind Volunteer Labor: $3,135,488

Number of States Represented: 28 Number of Church Partners: 92

Number of Corporate Partners: 8 FEMA Registrations: 1344

Properties Cleaned/Cleared: 817 Minor Repairs: 194

Major Repairs: 62 Rehabs: 11

New Builds: 14 Total Projects: 281


It was the consensus of the VROC partners that the remaining balance of funds be placed in an escrow account for 18 months to assist our current client list with any unforeseen unmet needs that may arise. At the end of the 18 months the funds will be transferred to a Salvation Army Disaster account earmarked for Southern Indiana.


As I bring this letter to a close, I want to give God alone the glory for all He allowed us to accomplish in His name. I pray the Lord will bless each of you and if the need arises, I hope we have the opportunity to do the Lord’s work together again down the road. Until then, keep Him first in all that you do.


Serving Him, that we may serve others,


Kevin Cox

Last Updated on Tuesday, 21 January 2014 18:37
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