2020 Work Teams

2020 Work Teams

First United Methodist Church, Wichita

For more information, Contact Annette Schmidt at 316-267-6244 Ext. 320 or annettes@firstwichita.org

“Christ has no body on earth but yours; yours are the only hands with which he can do his work, yours are the only feet with which he can go about the world, yours are the only eyes through which his compassion can shine forth upon a troubled world.”  –Teresa of Avila

  1. Heifer Ranch, Perryville, Arkansas
    1. INFORMATION MEETING: Sunday, October 13, 2019, at 12:15 p.m. in Room 304B.
    2. March 2020
    3. Women age 14 and above
    4. Lambing season
    5. Facilitated discussions
    6. Experiential leaning activities
    7. Hands-on animal work
    8. Camaraderie
    9. 2-night or 3-night
    10. Will also go to Heifer International in Little Rock, Arkansas
  2. Deer Park UMC, Bailey, Colorado
    1. September 24-27
  3. McCurdy Ministries, Espanola, New Mexico
  4. Camp Horizon, Arkansas City, Kansas
    1. May 1-3
  5. Oklahoma ROAD (Recovering Oklahomans After Disaster
    1. Around 750 families that will not recover without volunteer help on home repairs.
  6. Concordia, Argentina
    1. INFORMATION MEETING: Sunday, October 13, 2019 at 1:15 p.m. in Room 304B.
    2. Sergio and Patricia Tristan – Hosts
    3. Congregation has been in Concordia, Argentina since 1802
    4. The building was built in 1906
    5. Minor repairs and painting in the Sanctuary and 2 Sunday School rooms
    6. Also possibility of building a new bathroom and updating the kitchen
    7. May-June 2020 (Fall) or September-October 2020 (Spring)
  7. Henderson Settlement, Frakes, Kentucky
    1. This is a family Work Team. Children and grandchildren are encouraged to go.  They must be accompanied by an adult.  You do not have to bring family members to be on this team!
    2. Some of the projects could involve community home repair and campus improvement projects.
    3. Projects for all ages and skill levels
    4. July 17-26, 2020
    5. Cost at Henderson Settlement is $250.00/person, plus travel expenses. The Bob and Sharon Thom Memorial is underwriting this team, which lowers the cost of the team. Contact Annette (annettes@firstwichita.org) for details.
  1. Disaster Relief
    1. Possible locales: Bahamas, East Coast and Houston.

ERT Deployment to Nebraska – Week of April 22nd

Monday (April 22) begins our next round of ERT deployments.  Our ministry in Nebraska continues, and you are needed to help fill in the gaps.  This is where we currently stand :

  • April 22 – 26, Columbus, NE – 4 committed ERT’s, many more needed. Housing at the Outreach Center
  • April 27 – 29, North Loup, NE – 3 committed ERT’s 4 more needed.  Pastor Bonnie Brock will need to know if you are coming (bbrock@greatplainsumc.org)
  • April 30 – May 5, Fremont, NE – 2 committed ERT’s many more needed.  Pastor Bill Gepford will need to know if you need housing (billgepford@gmail.com)
  • April 25-28 – Valley, NE – 3 ERT’s committed, 4 more needed. Pastor Carl Ratcliff will need to know if you need housing (cratcliff@greatplainsumc.org)

For those of you knowing individuals who recently have completed their ERT training, they have not been added to the data base yet to receive these emails, so please pass the word on to them about volunteers currently needed.  They can email me directly.

If we don’t get more volunteers for Fremont, those dates will be canceled and rescheduled.

Contact Rev. Hollie Tapley, Disaster Response Coordinator, Great Plains United Methodist Conference

Office: 785-272-9111 or Direct: 785-414-4227

Facebook: Great Plains Disaster Response or Great Plains UMVIM


Early Response Training (ERT) – Wichita on 5/4/2019

Early Response Training (ERT) – Wichita, KS 5/4/2019
Saturday, May 4, 2019 at 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Add to my calendar


2220 N Yale Ave
Wichita, KS 67220-2818View map →


If you are willing to be involved in the early days following a disaster, come to this training!

  • What:    Early Response Team Training (Disaster Response)
  • Where:   University UMC, 2220 N Yale Ave, Wichita, KS
  • When:   5/4/2019 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Trainer:  David Rayson


Not a first response group of emergency workers nor a recovery rebuild or repair team: the purpose of ERTs is to fill the specific need in the early days after a disaster of being a Christian presence of the church. ERTs respond only after they have been requested by the affected community. Come learn where United Methodists are involved, what is a disaster, how do we prepare for a disaster, what we can do when a disaster strikes, how the disaster response plan is activated, and how to be a caring presence in communities facing disaster recover. You will also how we avoid harming the recovery process for individuals.

You will also learn about the roles Early Response Teams play in the early days after a disaster:

  • Provide a Christian presence, be a part of the caring ministry of “listeners”
  • Take steps to prevent further damage to a family’s personal property: tarps, flood clean-out, debris removal
  • Help manage donated materials, gather information, or do other things needed in the community
  • Observe survivors’ needs and report those to the local disaster operations

Various tasks are assigned to an ERT by those selected by the community to command the response, but no task is more important than being a part of the ministry of listeners who help survivors begin to heal. Team members must respect that some work on damaged homes may, in fact, jeopardize the survivor’s eligibility for greater assistance. Teams and team members must pledge to be part of the solution and not become the problem, to join in the response rather than initiate their own desires.

Included in the ERT training is an UMCOR Verified Volunteers background check. Everyone attending a training is required to complete this training. Great Plains Annual Conference policy is that for all overnight trips, Safe Gatherings is required, so ERTs are required to obtain both Verified Volunteers and Safe Gatherings in order to be able to respond in a time of disaster. ERT’s must be able to respond with little advance notice, putting personal plans on hold when the call to respond comes your way.

Registration fee covers course materials, snacks, lunch and instructor travel costs. Everyone attending must bring a laptop or smartphone to the training. 

For more information, contact David Rayson: derayson@yahoo.com

Flood Buckets (Cleaning Kits) Assembly

We will be assembling Flood Buckets this Sunday, March 31st, following Downtown Alive service (approximately 12 noon) in Meredith Hall.  We are requesting $37.50/bucket and will have the supplies ready to assemble the buckets.  Pizza will be available if you let me know that you will be there to help and how many pieces of pizza you will eat.  This will not take very long and we will load the trailer following the assembly.  On Monday, we will deliver our flood buckets and additional flood buckets and hygiene kits from other congregations to Nebraska.

Let me know if you will be at the Assembly Event and eating pizza or will be bringing us additional flood buckets and/or hygiene kits for us to deliver to Nebraska

Please see https://www.umcor.org/UMCOR/Relief-Supplies to obtain details of items in the Flood Buckets (Cleaning Kits) and Hygiene Kits.

Contact me with questions at annettes@firstwichita.org or 316-267-6244 Ext. 320.

Let us help our neighbors.


Continued Flooding in Nebraska

From Rev. Hollie Tapley, Great Plains UMC Conference, Disaster Response Coordinator:

Good morning ERT’s!!

I’m so blessed to have you all as a part of our ministry!!!! The Nebraska flooding event is still ongoing, yet there are some areas still surrounded by water, or yet roads still closed.

This week, volunteers are needed:

  1. Columbus, NE
    1. Work Thursday – Sunday
    2. Work Saturday – Sunday
    3. Work Monday – Wednesday
    4. Other:  please provide

The Platte County EM asked Great Plains to be responsible for the relief in Columbus.  Individuals are needed for muck outs, and to help with intake on individuals.

  1. Fremont, NE – This is being coordinated with Church of the Resurrection volunteers. If you are interested in helping them, please email me and I will get you in touch with them.

Housing/Meals: FUMC, Columbus and FUMC Fremont are arranging housing and meals for volunteersI need to know asap who is going where so that I can inform the pastors.

If you have questions, please contact me at 316-267-6244 Ext. 320 or annettes@firstwichita,org.

Annette Schmidt, Wichita 1st UMC,

Flood Buckets for Nebraska Flooding


We will be assembling Flood Buckets (Cleaning Kits) on Sunday, March 31st about noon in Meredith Hall.  Pizza will be provided, so let me know if you will be helping.

Some of the items have changed since we last assembled Flood Buckets.  We can only accept items that are listed below:

  • One five-gallon round bucket with re-sealable lid (14.35” h x 12.19” w x 12.19” d)
    • No screw lids
    • May be used, but must be free from all residual product
    • Advertisements on the outside acceptable
  • One 32-64 oz. bottle liquid laundry detergent
  • One 16-40 oz. bottle liquid concentrate household cleaner
    • No spray cleaners
  • One 16-34 oz. bottle dish soap
  • One 4-8 oz. pump spray air freshener (three solid, or three gel fresheners also acceptable)
  • One 6-14 oz. pump spray insect repellent (pack of 10-20 wipes also acceptable)
    • Pump spray bottles must have protective covers
  • One scrub brush
    • With or without handle
  • 18 re-useable cleaning wipes
    • No terrycloth, microfiber or paper towels
  • Five scouring pads sponges
    • No stainless-steel pads with soap in them
  • 36-50 clothespins
  • One 50-100 ft. clothesline (cotton or plastic line)
  • 24 roll of heavy-duty trash bags (33-45-gallon sizes) 
  • Five N95 particulate respirator dust masks (1-3 mm thickness) 
    • No surgical masks
  • Two pairs kitchen gloves
    • Durable for multiple uses
  • One pair work gloves
    • Cotton with leather palm or all leather

Please bring your items to the church no later than Sunday, March 31 at 9:30 a.m.  If you would like to donate money instead of items, please make your check payable to FUMC and note on the memo line “Flood Buckets”.  Please have monetary contributions turned in by Wednesday, March 27th.

UMCOR lists the value of the Flood Buckets as $75.00.  However, when I went shopping yesterday I purchased all items at Dollar Tree (except the bucket, lid, insect repellant, trash bags & dust masks for $11.50).  Lowe’s is giving us a discount on 100 buckets and lids, so we will have those available to you.  I’ll be shopping again today for the insect repellant, trash bags and dust masks and I’ll update my total.  When shopping at Dollar Tree and Lowe’s, please thank them for their support!

Would you like to donate money to fill several buckets or go shopping for items?  Let me know what you plan.  Also let me know if you will be at the Flood Bucket Assembly so we can plan for pizza and assembly jobs.

Contact me with questions or your plans at annettes@firstwichita.org or 316-267-6244 Ext. 320 (you can leave a message if I don’t answer).


Calling all UMC ERTS!!

Flooding in Nebraska

Your help is needed!  The Great Plains Conference is responding to the flooding in Nebraska.  There are currently two opportunities:

  • Travel today and arrive at North Loup UMC in North Loup, NE.  Please arrive by 5 pm if possible.  You will work Wednesday – Friday and travel home on Saturday.  Lodging/meals are covered.  You must contact Rev. Hollie Tapley before heading out.  Her contract information is below.
  • Travel to North Loup UMC on Thursday and arrive by 5 pm is possible.  Work Friday – Sunday (1/2 day) and travel home Sunday afternoon.  Lodging/meals are covered. You must contact Rev. Hollie Tapley before heading out.  Her contract information is below.

Contact:  Rev. Hollie Tapley, Disaster Response Coordinator Great Plains United Methodist Conference

htapley@greatplainsumc.org or 785-414-4227

Do you want ERT training so that you can help?  This Saturday, March 23rd in Waverly, NE at the First United Methodist Church, 14410 Folkestone St, Waverloy, Nebraska.  Time: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.


Adult Work Team to Wolf Point, Montana


Information Meeting


Adult Work Team to Wolf Point, Montana

Repair Our World


Come learn more about Repair our World (Hebrew: Tikkum Olam) and the Work Team.  The Team will be going in June 2019.

Meeting Information

When: Sunday, February 17, 2019

When: 12:30 p.m.

Where: Room 101B

Team Leader: Nancy McKellar

Questions: Contact Annette Schmidt (annettes@firstwichita.org) or 267-6244, Ext. 320

Mountain T.O.P., Tennessee Work Team

A Work Team will be heading to Mountain T.O.P. (Tennessee Outreach Project) in Grundy County, Tennessee over Spring Break (March 8-17).  We will be working in the camp for 2 days and in the community for another 2 days.  We will be travelling in vans to Tennessee.

Interested?  An Informational Meeting will be held on Sunday, January 20th at 12:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 330 N Broadway.  Enter from the parking lot off of Topeka at the “Worship and Fellowship” entrance.  The meeting will be in Room 101B.  Come find out about Mountain T.O.P. and how you can participate.