Samaritan’s Purse new Canadian warehouse
by Frank King
Victims of cyclones, earthquakes, tsunamis and other disasters in Asia can count on getting help faster from Samaritan’s Purse, thanks to the organization’s massive new warehouse in Calgary.
The 115,000-square-foot facility (larger than two American football fields) opened in June at the Christian relief charity’s Canadian headquarters.
“This new warehouse enables Samaritan’s Purse to respond to disasters in Canada and around the world with greater speed and efficiency – that’s vital to bringing help and hope to suffering people in Jesus’ Name,” said Samaritan’s Purse Canada Executive Director Fred Weiss.
During a June 7 warehouse dedication event, Samaritan’s Purse President Franklin Graham told 400 invited supporters that, “There’s no other facility like this in Canada. This warehouse enables us to help people (quickly and efficiently) in Jesus’ Name.”
Stocked with emergency supplies like tarps, kitchen and hygiene kits, water filters, blankets and more, the warehouse will service as a staging area for Samaritan’s Purse. The organization’s DC-8 will fly into Calgary right after an Asian disaster, pick up supplies, then continue to the disaster zone.
The warehouse also provides a staging area for two Disaster Relief Units. These tractor trailers are outfitted with disaster recovery equipment including generators, pumps, hand tools, and safety gear for volunteers. They also serve as volunteer coordination centers, and are equipped with a self-contained office, communications system, and other supplies.
Samaritan’s Purse has two other Disaster Relief Units. They are based in southern Ontario for quick response to disasters in central and eastern Canada.
In addition, the warehouse provides storage space for the Mobile Ministry Center truck used by volunteer chaplains from Samaritan’s Purse’s sister organization, the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
These crisis-trained chaplains work alongside Samaritan’s Purse volunteers offering emotional and spiritual support to volunteers, first responders and disaster victims.
In recent years, Samaritan’s Purse has assisted victims in a wide variety of Canadian disasters including flooding in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia, plus tornadoes in Ontario, and forest fires in British Columbia and Alberta.
Internationally, the organization has brought physical and spiritual help to victims of cyclones (Mozambique, Vanuatu), typhoons (Philippines), earthquakes (Nepal, Haiti), hurricanes (Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico, Haiti), and tsunamis (Japan).