Disaster Relief

What Is Southern Baptist Disaster Relief?

Since 1967, when a handful of Texans answered God’s call, Southern Baptist Disaster Relief (SBDR) has grown into one of the largest disaster response agencies in the U.S. with more than 82,000 trained volunteers and 1552 mobile units. Volunteers stand ready to be called out when disaster strikes.

SBDR desires to represent Jesus Christ in the middle of a crisis. Believers are under scriptural and moral obligation to provide a positive witness of the love of Jesus to everyone. As Christians, we are to demonstrate love to those affected by disasters through the efficient and immediate use of the resources, talents, and time entrusted to them.

Through the development of a cooperative team effort, needs can be efficiently and effectively met for the glory of God. Every Southern Baptist Convention in North America now has a disaster relief ministry. They vary in their abilities, number of units, number of trained volunteers, and resources.

Southern Baptists are usually involved in meeting immediate needs in an emergency relief response; sending chaplains, feeding units, and medical teams. During recovery, SBDR continues operating feeding units, shower and laundry units, clean-up crews, and emergency repairs. Depending on the nature of the disaster needs, SBDR teams may continue to serve as the response transitions to rebuilding.

SBDR is a founding member of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) and has national signed agreements with:

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
  • The American Red Cross (ARC)
  • The Salvation Army (TSA)
  • National Voluntary Organizations Assisting in Disaster (VOAD)
  • Mercy Medical Airlift
  • Convoy of Hope
  • The Army Military Auxiliary Radio (MARS) Unit
  • North American Mission Board (NAMB)
  • Baptist Global Response (BRG)

How to Get Involved

Are you interested in serving with Southern Baptist Disaster Relief? Follow this link to complete our volunteer information form. We will contact you with information about upcoming training events.

Disaster Relief Arizona Logo

Volunteer Requirements

  • Completed application
  • Passed background check
  • Basic training, including Involving Southern Baptists in Disaster Relief

Stages of a Call Out

  • Alert: Notification of the possibility of assisting someplace. Respond if you might be able to go.
  • Standby: Probability of going somewhere. If you are still able to go, start getting ready.
  • Go/No Go: Your team is either informed of when they will go, or your team moves into standby or closing.
  • Closing: Your team is no longer needed.

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