AHRWEILER, GERMANY – Samaritan’s Purse is partnering with To All Nations to aid Victoria and others who have been impacted by the widespread flooding in Germany’s Rhineland-Pfalz region. To date, more than 1,500 volunteers have helped over 360 individuals clean out their homes and businesses while also comforting and encouraging them.
For Victoria, the past three summers living along the Ahr River in western Germany were spent relaxing alongside friends and neighbors, exchanging laughter and homemade baked goods.
Now, those days are only memories as ferocious flooding devastated communities along the Ahr River in July. Killing more than 200 people and displacing hundreds of families, the waters were so powerful that they broke down concrete walls and, in some cases, destroyed entire homes.
“It was my dream but now it’s really a nightmare.”
“This was my dream apartment,” Victoria said. “It was so beautiful to live here…The people here, we all stand together and have so much fun together and we help each other all the time, in the garden, in the kitchen, everywhere.”
Victoria, Ahrweiler Resident:
It was just a dream to live by Ahr River because of the water and the mountains around you. And it was just a beautiful place, a wonderland. But now it’s really a nightmare.
It’s shocking to see Germany like this.
I can’t believe it. I can’t say the words that would describe what happened here. It’s just– I don’t know, like a war.
Sylke Busenbender, Executive Director, Samaritan’s Purse:
I’ve always thought we never have disasters here in Germany. And now, we have this massive flood.
Ken Isaacs, Samaritan’s Purse Vice President of Programs and Government Relations:
The Ahr River unexpectedly, within 30 minutes, rose more than 10 meters. Thousands of houses have been flooded. The death toll is in the hundreds.
Samaritan’s Purse has an office in Berlin, Germany, one of our affiliate offices, and they have been preparing to serve with us around the world, working with our Christian partners to all nations with the local seminary, with local churches. We’ve been able to mobilize more than 1,000 volunteers. And we are here helping in Jesus’ Name.
Alex Becker, Samaritan’s Purse:
With the help of the software, we are getting the needs, documenting them and matching them with the manpower we have.
Joas Bogesch, Volunteer:
Samaritan’s Purse, we helped during this flooding by mudding out all the basements. We helped getting all the stuff that was inside the houses out of it. We cleaned up everything. And we really wanted to encourage people and show them that they are not alone.
Katharina Dietenhofer, Ahrweiler Resident:
Having your teams here supporting us is overwhelming our hearts. The work, which we planned to do within a week, was done within a few hours.
Natalia Siebert, Volunteer:
There’s so much suffering in here, and it’s not Christ-like to stay at home. That’s why I’m here. And I want to actively live out what I preach to my friends and my family every day.
Stephan Freitag, Volunteer:
It’s a good way to not just speak about the Gospel but to show the Gospel, to show the love Jesus gave to us.
Thank you. Thank you so much that you are here and help us.
Jan Sotzen, Ahrweiler Resident:
When you hear that people come from America, from all areas in Germany to help and work, gave them so much hope and faith for the future. This is so amazing and so cool.
I pray that as people are searching for answers, “Why did this happen?” that in some way or another, our work and the work of Christian partners here will be salt and light, and that they would come to know Jesus as Lord and Savior in their lives.
Samaritan’s Purse is a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization providing spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan’s Purse has helped meet the needs of people who are victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease, and famine with the purpose of sharing God’s love through His Son, Jesus Christ. The organization serves the Church worldwide to promote the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Samaritan’s Purse International Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) program is committed to meeting the critical needs of victims of war, poverty, famine, disease, and natural disaster. We stand ready to respond at a moment’s notice whenever and wherever disaster strikes. The DART specializes in providing water, food, shelter, and medical care while sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ.
CONTACT: Melissa Nystrom, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Global News Alliance, Restoring Dreams in Germany After Devastating Floods
- Samaritan’s Purse, Official Website