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Hurricane Ian - Florida/Cuba

PPM Disaster Response: Hurricane Ian - Florida/Cuba

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On September 28, 2022, Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida as a category 4 storm and has caused widespread and significant damage. The torrential winds and rainfall have caused flooding and devastation across much of the southern part of the state. Prior to hitting Florida, the storm passed over Cuba as a category 3, causing power outages and damage across the western part of the country.

We have been in constant and direct communication with our partners and staff who were impacted and will update this page as they evaluate the aftermath and effect on their communities. 

Please join us in praying for the safety of the people in Cuba and Florida and that necessary resources can make it to affected communities quickly. 

Since September we have been mobilizing teams from PPM Disaster Response to Florida to deliver needed supplies, labor and encouragement.  We are currently expecting to bring over 1,000 volunteers in 2023 - over 37,000 labor hours! This will help us to serve many of the 35,000 homeowners whose homes were either damaged or destroyed.

If you are able, please donate financially via the link on this page as we assist the local Church in meeting great needs in their communities.

If you are able to organize a work/recovery team, we know that the needs will be significant and long-term.  If you would like to keep up on the efforts, check out our Trip Journals as we will be sending teams nearly every week from now through the summer 2023.

A special thanks to our partner, Gulf Coast Community Foundation, for helping in the effort to get homeowners back on their feet and in their homes!

Updates From The Field

Long-Term Recovery Updates

by Dillon Crum | March 1, 2023 3:44 PM

Thank you to everyone who is still following PPM's response to Hurricane Ian.  While much has been done in terms of recovery, the road ahead for many homeowners is long.  Our long-term recovery teams are starting to arrive in SWFL now and will be working with our local partners throughout the Spring and Summer.  For up-to-date information and to follow along with our teams on the ground please follow us on Facebook at Praying Pelican Missions - Disaster Response

Steady Recovery

by Grant Hoel | February 27, 2023 3:50 PM

It has been 5 months since Hurricane Ian made landfall in Southwest Florida damaging or destroying 35,000 homes.  The recovery will take years, but with the help of the teams coming to serve, many of them will recover! 

A special thanks to Gulf Coast Community Foundation out of Venice, FL who is empowering our volunteers to be even more effective by helping funding tools and materials for the work!

Steady Recovery

Come and Serve

by Dillon Crum | October 14, 2022 9:25 AM

We are now two weeks out since Hurricane Ian decimated South Florida.  While many communities have started the rebuilding process, many others are still waiting to return to their homes as water has still not receded.  FEMA is still working on search and rescue in some of the hard hit areas surrounding Fort Myers.  Disaster Recovery Shelters have been set up for residents who have lost everything.  PPM will be networking with these Shelter Volunteer Coordinators to learn how we might be of assistance.  We know that many families are in these shelters and how stressful it can be for these parents to work with insurance adjusters while their children are running around.  If you are interested in serving the people of South Florida and would like to assist in areas other than physical labor this might be where the Lord is leading you.  If you have any interest please fill out the Request Info form on this page and a PPM staff member will reach out to you to start planning your trip.  

We have been so encouraged to see the way the Lord has mobilized the global church to serve our brothers and sisters affected by Hurricane Ian.  Please continue to pray for wisdom for the leaders at all levels who are putting together recovery plans, and pray for the peace of the Lord to rest on all those still displaced.

Come and Serve

Supporting Cuba

by Dillon Crum | October 11, 2022 1:02 PM

The situation in Cuba is still difficult for many of us to wrap our minds around. For many months, the electricity has been rationed there, so Cuban families have been going 4-10 hours without power on a daily basis. Electricity has slowly been being restored across the island, but the power grid is outdated and weak. Many communities and families are without power. 

This exacerbates the needs--food needs to be found and consumed daily, since refrigeration is not being sustained to reliably keep food safe. Food shortages were already challenging. In the last year, record numbers of Cuban people have been fleeing the country in search of a better life.

According to Cuban estimates Hurricane Ian damaged around 63,000 homes and of those 7,000 have been declared uninhabitable. The Cuban people were already living through extreme economic hardship and now many of the building materials they need are impossible to find. With the decimation, the remaining industry in western Cuba (tobacco fields) and infrastructure challenges, many people are now without a means to support their families and rebuild their homes.  

If you feel called to support the churches and families in Cuba either through donations or service please don’t hesitate to fill out the Request Info form on this page and a member of our staff will reach out to provide you with more information regarding tangible ways you can make a difference.

Supporting Cuba

Hands and Feet

by Dillon Crum | October 10, 2022 3:16 PM

Our PPM staff team recently returned from distributing donations to three of our partners located in the hardest hit areas of FL.  It was so encouraging to see the way the local church was already on the move, loving and caring for their communities.  This picture is from one of our partners in Cape Coral.  Their community was greatly affected and when we arrived on Wednesday they had many trees down, blocking access to their parking lot.  The day prior they had opened their church and were passing out supplies, but with the demand being so high they ran out within the first 2 hrs.  They were unsure of where they were going to get more supplies until one of our pastor partners in Fort Myers pointed us in their direction.  Thanks to the overwhelming generosity of our financial supporters and supplies donors we were able to drop off enough supplies for them to serve their community for a couple more days! One of our long-time PPM partners, Granger Community Church, was also able to bring donations to the church and their dedicated crew worked all day to clear the church parking lot of all the fallen trees.  This was just a wonderful moment of the body of Christ coming together and serving one another in a time of need and it was all so beautifully orchestrated through God's divine plan and human faithfulness.  If you would like to be a part of PPM's next steps in helping the local church in FL, please fill out the Request Info form on this page and a member of our staff will be in touch shortly.  Please continue to pray for all those who have lost so much through this storm and for the Lord to continue to use all of us as His hands and feet in their service.

Hands and Feet

Distributing Supplies in Cape Coral

by Carissa Hildebrandt | October 5, 2022 1:14 PM

We’ve been collecting supplies the past few days and are now passing them out in Lehigh Acres and Cape Coral,FL. We’ve met so many families as they come to pickup items. The family in the photo just moved to FL from Cuba 30 days ago. Our staff member Grant is fluent in Spanish and was able to connect with them and help pick out the supplies needed.

Distributing Supplies in Cape Coral

1st Pickup Site!

by Carissa Hildebrandt | October 2, 2022 3:35 PM

We just loaded up the moving truck at our first stop, FBC Trussville, just outside of Birmingham, AL. Thank you so much to everyone who has donated and supported the efforts in caring for our partners and their communities. 

1st Pickup Site!

Alabama Drop Sites

by Dillon Crum | September 30, 2022 3:07 PM

The PPM Disaster Response team will be traveling through Alabama en route to the affected areas of southern Florida. All donated supplies (as well as supplies purchased with donations given at the link above) will be given directly to local church partners working to meet the needs of their communities in the aftermath of the storm. If you are able to donate supplies (see list below), please bring them to one of the following sites:


First Baptist Church Trussville, 128 N Chalkville Rd., Trussville, AL

Drop Off Directions: Donation center is always open. Supplies can be dropped off at the Event Center entrance.

Items will be collected by PPM around noon (12pm) on Sunday, 10/2.

Union Springs:

First Baptist Church Union Springs, 105 N Prairie St., Union Springs, AL 36089

Drop Off Directions: Sunday morning (10/2) between 9:30-10:30am

Items will be collected by PPM at 3pm on Sunday, 10/2.


Southside Baptist Church: 522 S Brundidge St., Troy, AL 36081

Drop Off Directions: Office hours 8am-5pm M-F; Sunday 9am-10:30am, 3pm-6pm

Items will be collected by PPM at 9am on Monday, 10/3.


Drop Site #1: The Stockyard in Headland: 24 E Church St, Headland, AL, United States, Alabama

Drop Off Directions: Friday (9/30) between 7am-5pm; Saturday (10/1) 8am-1pm; Monday (10/3) 7am-12pm

Items will be collected by PPM at 12pm on Monday, 10/3.

Drop Site #2:Gateway Church: 1641 AL-134, Headland, AL 36345

Drop Off Directions: Saturday (10/1) 2pm-4pm; Sunday (10/2) 2pm-4pm in the fellowship hall

Items will be collected by PPM at 12pm on Monday, 10/3.

Requested Supplies:

  • Diapers (both adult and kid sizes)
  • Baby Wipes
  • Baby Formula
  • Clorox Wipes
  • Tarps
  • Chainsaws
  • Chainsaw Bar Oil
  • 2-Cycle Oil
  • Generators
  • Gas Cans
  • Shovels
  • Buckets
  • Work Gloves
  • Walmart, Lowe’s, or Home Depot Gift Cards
  • Hand Tools
  • Cordless Impact Drill/Reciprocating Saw Sets
  • Batteries
  • Rope/Paracord
  • Duct Tape
  • Sump Pumps
  • Fans
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Safety Glasses
  • Hearing Protection
  • Extension Cords
  • Power Strips
  • Advil/Tylenol
  • Headlamps

More Updates from Cuba

by Dillon Crum | September 30, 2022 3:06 PM

Our friends in Pinar del Rio have updated us with more pictures of the destruction in their neighborhoods.  As of Wednesday, power was being restored to some of the eastern parts of the island which were hit to a lesser extent.  Authorities are saying Pinar del Rio and other western parts of the island will be without power for several more weeks.  The need is great in these communities and we will be working to get more updates so we can get a better understanding of how teams may be able to assist.  If you would like to learn more about how PPM will be responding please fill out the Request Info form on this page.

More Updates from Cuba

Grasping the Extent of the Damage

by Dillon Crum | September 30, 2022 2:59 PM

While Hurricane Ian is still on the move and affecting people in South Carolina, the extent of the damage in Florida is just being realized. As of this afternoon, the death toll has risen to 21 people and authorities are expecting that number to rise as they make their way into the communities along the coast that have been completely cut off.  The rebuild in many of these communities is expected to last months, if not years.  

As of this afternoon, power has been restored to nearly half of those who lost it during the storm. Nearly a million people are still without power, however, and some of the harder hit areas could be without power for a couple more weeks as rescue and utility crews work to clear debris and check power lines.

Please continue to pray for all those being affected by this storm, pray for the peace of the Lord to rest on the families that have lost so much, pray for the rescue crews to make it to these harder-hit areas quickly, and pray for the Lord to guide you in how you can use your gifts and talents to help those affected.

We continue to praise God for His goodness and for the ways He has equipped the global church to come and serve these local churches. Please continue to follow along with these updates and fill out the Request Info form if you are interested in joining our partners in their recovery.

(photo credit: Wilfredo Lee/AP)

Grasping the Extent of the Damage

Partner update

by Dillon Crum | September 29, 2022 9:20 PM

One of our partner churches, Christ United Methodist Church near Fort Myers, has sent photos of the storm's destruction along with the following update:

"Church damage:

  • Church office building: gutter
  • Sanctuary: some water on floor
  • Fellowship Hall: some water and the inside roof of entrance
  • Power lines down on the street next to the church/no power in the whole area
  • Parsonage is a mess
  • Lanai fully destroyed, tree, gutters and fence damage
  • Please bring tools for tree branches and aluminum.
  • There's water, but it seems that power will not be restored soon."

We have a long-time partner that has been serving alongside Christ United for years coming next week to assist them with their recovery.  This is a beautiful picture of the body of Christ coming together and serving each other in times of great need.

We have many more partners across Florida that will be needing help with their recovery. If you are interested in serving alongside these partners, please fill out the Request Info form on this page. We will be looking to fully mobilize teams in November and can begin planning your trip immediately.

Partner update

Assessing the Damage

by Dillon Crum | September 29, 2022 9:53 AM

We have received word from our staff and partners in Florida that while last night was very intense, they are alright in body and spirit, praise God. Our local PPM staff have reported roof damage and fallen trees in their neighborhood. We are waiting to receive word from our partners in Fort Myers, Tampa Bay, and Venice as to the extent of their damage. However, the news is reporting that entire neighborhoods in Venice, Nokomis, and Laurel are inaccessible due to flooding and debris and, without power and phone service, they are essentially cut off until help arrives.  President Biden has declared Ian a major disaster, which will make resources and finances more readily available.  

Please continue to pray for the people of Florida as they begin the long process of recovery, and pray for the people in Georgia and South Carolina where Ian is projected to make another significant impact. If you are in the Alabama areas around Birmingham, Union Springs, Troy, or Dothan, you can still donate supplies that will be collected by PPM staff and taken to our partners in Florida.  

PPM staff will be arriving in Florida on Monday and more direct partner needs will be shared at that time. Please continue to check back here for those updates and tangible ways you can make a difference in the lives of our brothers and sisters in Florida.

Photo credit: Marco Bello/Reuters

Assessing the Damage


by Dillon Crum | September 28, 2022 8:16 PM

The National Hurricane Center said the eye of the category 4 hurricane made landfall near Cayo Costa State Park at 3:05 this afternoon. The extremely dangerous conditions this hurricane is unleashing, including catastrophic floods and life-threatening storm surge, will continue as the storm advances inland. Some areas could see the worst surge forecast on record. Two of our PPM staff that live in central Florida are already reporting damage to their house and their neighbors as well as a complete loss of power.

Please continue to pray for the people of Florida. PPM will be mobilizing early next week to assess partner damage in Tampa, Ft. Myers, and Venice.

If you live in the Birmingham, Union Springs, Troy, or Dothan areas of Alabama and would like to contribute donations, please fill out the Request Info form on this page and a member of our team will reach out with a supplies list and local donation drop site address.

This is one of those events where we really need the Church to rise up to help these local churches meet the needs in their communities. In your prayers, please ask the Lord how He might use you and your gifts to assist in what we presume will be substantial recovery efforts.


Central Florida Update

by Brent Kirk | September 28, 2022 4:11 PM

Wednesday Central Florida Update

by Brent Kirk | September 28, 2022 12:31 PM

Impact in Cuba

by Dillon Crum | September 28, 2022 9:24 AM

Yesterday evening, we started to receive reports from our friends in Cuba about the damage they sustained from Hurricane Ian. Over 50,000 people were evacuated from the western region of the island, including our friends living there. Infrastructure damage is immense and the entire island is without power since the grid went down. Work has begun on restoring power, so please pray that the power is restored quickly.

We are attempting to learn the extent of the needs, but with no electricity, communication has been slow. Please continue to pray for the people of Cuba, that the supplies they need will arrive quickly, and for peace and safety as people assess the damage to their homes. Continue to check here for updates and ways that you can help.

If you are interested in serving in Cuba during their recovery, please fill out the Request Info section of this page and a member of our staff will reach out to you.

Impact in Cuba

A Pastor's Home in Cuba

by Grant Hoel | September 27, 2022 10:50 PM

This pastor returned to his home to assess the damage after Hurricane Ian ripped through his hometown of Pinar del Rio.
A Pastor's Home in Cuba

Assessing the damages in Cuba

by Grant Hoel | September 27, 2022 10:47 PM

Update from our partner in Florida

by Mark Profitt - PPM Partner | September 27, 2022 5:37 PM

With the shifting of Hurricane Ian to the southeastern counties of Florida, many people will be completely unprepared for this storm. There will be a shortage of supplies to protect homes and very little time to evacuate. Pray for protection of people and property. Pray for the intensity of this storm to weaken as it makes landfall and for people to be patient and compassionate towards others as Floridians ride out this storm. 

Central Florida-Current Conditions

by Brent Kirk | September 27, 2022 3:40 PM

Praying and Preparing

by Dillon Crum | September 27, 2022 3:10 PM

NOAA has changed the forecast for Hurricane Ian and has it reaching a Category 4 today and into tomorrow. Coastal communities have been given mandatory evacuation orders.  

We have reached out to all our partners in Florida to let them know we are praying for them and that we will be responding as soon as we can.

On Monday (Oct. 3rd), team members from PPM will be driving from Birmingham, AL to Ft. Myers, FL. They will be picking up donations from designated drop sites in Birmingham, Montgomery, Troy, and Dothan. If you are located near any of these communities and would like to know where our drop site is, please fill out an inquiry form and a member from our team will get you the closest address.

Praying and Preparing

Preparing for the storm - Pastora Zulma

by Adam Hildebrandt | September 26, 2022 3:51 PM

Pastora Zulma, her husband Robert, and Christ United Methodist Church in Lehigh Acres are preparing for the effects of Hurricane Ian as we speak. Their church is located just east of Ft. Meyers, FL. While store shelves are beginning to run out of things like bread and water, Pastora Zulma remains hopeful and ready to shepherd her congregation and city through whatever may come. The church is even a host site for first responders, and has showers and a parking lot at the ready, thanks in part to a Praying Pelican Missions group from Granger Community Church!

Please pray alongside Pastora Zulma for protection, strength, and courage as the storm moves in.

Preparing for the storm - Pastora Zulma

Update from central Florida

by Cathy Kirk | September 26, 2022 3:24 PM

As a PPM staff member living in central Florida, we are watching the storm closely and bracing for impact as Ian approaches. Water has already run out in most stores, though we were thankfully able to get a few cases. Shelves are being emptied rapidly and many things have already sold out.  The stores were crazy when we went out today.

Please continue to keep Florida in your prayers.

Ian's Projected Path

by Dillon Crum | September 25, 2022 3:18 PM

This is one projection of Ian's trajectory. 

Ian's Projected Path

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