From Hampton Roads to Houston: Help for disaster victims in Texas


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — There’s plenty of blame to go around in Texas following the triple disaster but not enough drinking water. About 390,000 Texans remain under boil water advisories weeks after a winter storm crippled the state’s power system. Rolling blackouts had cascading effects that left dozens dead and thousands in the dark. Many homes were damaged when water leaked from pipes that ruptured during the cold snap.

People carry groceries from a local gas station on February 15, 2021 in Austin, Texas. Winter storm Uri has brought historic cold weather to Texas, causing traffic delays and power outages, and storms have swept across 26 states with a mix of freezing temperatures and precipitation. (Photo by Montinique Monroe/Getty Images)

The triple disaster hits close to home for Pastor Martha Provo of St. Mark Deliverance Center in Portsmouth, and her husband Deacon Gregory Provo, a native of Beaumont, Texas. A cousin, left in the cold near Houston, was hauling firewood into his home when he slipped on ice and broke the tibia and fibula in one of his legs.

(Photo courtesy: Pastor Martha Provo)

“It was so devastating to hear — not just how it affected my relatives; no lights, no heat — the best [cousin Charles] could do is get firewood for his family. Unfortunately, when he did so, he slipped on ice,” said Martha Provo.

Family members in Texas (Photo courtesy: Pastor Martha Provo)

Martha Provo offered prayers for the cousin, and then got to work.

Last week, she launched a region-wide effort to collect items for the people of Houston and the surrounding areas. In a socially-distant collection event, donors dropped off bottled water, canned and dried food, first aid kits, and supplies for infants.

“Everyone gathered around and said ‘Yes, what can we do to help Houston?’ They are taking from what they have to give to others even when they are in need,” said Martha Provo.

Through Saturday at noon, donations can be dropped at the church at 3801 Turnpike Road.

Beginning on March 8, an 18-wheeler loaded with donations will hit the road for Houston.

(Photo courtesy: Kintrell Devin)

Martha Provo will offer prayers for the mission.

“We are saying a prayer for each and everyone who is looking at the need and saying from one community to another ‘Let us be a help,'” said Martha Provo.

If you would like to assist with the cost of the trip, the church has established a Cash App account: $SMDC2, or you can drop off a check at the church’s office.

For additional information call: 757-399-9915.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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