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Photo of a young adult MDS volunteer installing house wrap on a recent project.

News & Stories

“This bridge? It’s Christmas”

Twenty-nine families in Iron Station, North Carolina, are sleeping better at night. And their daytimes got better, too, after Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS) volunteers constructed a new 60-foot bridge to carry them in and out of their beloved...

Saying goodbye in the Louisiana bayou

“If I never come back here again, it’s going to be too soon.” Peter Goertzen, who has volunteered at more than 26 different MDS sites, remembers uttering these words back in 2007—the first time he ever served as a long-term volunteer in the...

At 101 years old, he’s back home

Shirley Smith, 83, waits every day to hear the singing. From her living room, where she sits and cares for her 101-year-old husband, Joe Smith, she hears the sounds of MDS volunteers who are repairing their home in Selma, Alabama: hammering, sawing...

Daily volunteers in Carstairs, Alberta construct a new home for Elisa Humphreys, whose home was destroyed by a tornado in 2023. Photo courtesy of Jessica Lawrence

Small town volunteer effort snowballs

Jessica Lawrence wasn’t sure how things would come together when she agreed to coordinate volunteers for a Mennonite Disaster Service (MDS) Alberta Unit response. While she entered the role with administrative experience, it was her first time...

A Jennings, LA volunteer working on demolition.

Reflections on saying goodbye in Jennings

Closing down the longstanding MDS response in Jennings, Louisiana, wasn’t easy. MDS Project Director Rollin Ulrich had the tough job—both logistically and emotionally—of moving MDS volunteers and equipment out of the Jennings Church of Christ...

2024 Spring Tornadoes – Plains States

A swath of devastating and deadly tornadoes walloped communities in the Plains States over the weekend. Authorities report at least four dead in Oklahoma and one in Iowa. At least 40 confirmed tornadoes hammered communities from Texas to Iowa....

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