I was back in Paducah, Kentucky, this week for the official "ribbon cutting" ceremony for our Beacon of Hope Kitchen that is serving Western Kentucky in the aftermath of the massive tornado disaster that hit this region in December.
It's hard to express what this relief kitchen means to these communities. Local leaders came out as we stood together and made a strong statement of our commitment to help the people of Western Kentucky who are on a long road to recovery.
+ + Devastation still everywhere
The truth is, the road to recovery is going to be very long. If you were to drive through the streets of Mayfield or other hard-hit communities this week, many areas are still totally devastated. The people here are going through the process of applying for federal aid, but that can take months. Local media is reporting that many are already feeling forgotten, just two months after the tornadoes hit. It breaks my heart.
While communities wait for federal relief, the Governor is suggesting that people look to organizations that are working in Kentucky right now for help -- which is precisely what Mercy Chefs is doing. This is why we're serving hot meals EVERY DAY in communities across Western Kentucky. Every meal we serve lets the people here know that SOMEBODY remembers... SOMEBODY still cares. This is why we've outfitted our Beacon of Hope facility to house volunteer teams that can come and help with the cleanup and rebuild.
And this is why I still need your help THIS WEEK!
My team worked intensely to launch our Beacon of Hope, and now we're an essential part of the rebuilding and healing these communities need. But I can't sustain this effort without ongoing support from friends like you.
This week alone, Mercy Chefs will provide thousands of hot meals through our Kentucky relief efforts and other vital outreaches. Every meal depends on the generosity of friends like you, so thanks in advance or your prayers and partnership.
Gary LeBlanc, Mercy Chefs