Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders Serves with Samaritan's Purse in Arkansas

June 2, 2024 • United States

Edward Graham was also on the ground June 2 in Benton County, Arkansas, where U.S. Disaster Relief is working in the wake of a devastating tornado.

U.S. Disaster Relief

Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders helped homeowners in Benton County by serving alongside Samaritan’s Purse on June 2. The county is reeling after seven tornadoes hit the area on May 26, ranging in intensity from EF1 to EF3.

“It’s amazing to have an organization like this show up in Arkansas, bring their resources, their time, their people, and especially bring their message of faith—to share that hope with so many people who’ve lost so much,” Gov. Sanders said. “We are glad that we had the opportunity to partner with them today.”

Gov. Sanders was joined by her husband, Bryan, and their daughter, as well as her mother, Janet Huckabee, the former Arkansas First Lady. Huckabee is a frequent and key volunteer with our Samaritan’s Purse disaster relief teams. Congressman Steve Womack also served with us on Sunday.

Gov. Sanders and her team got right to work.

Gov. Sanders and her team got right to work.

The governor and her team got right to work, greeting homeowners and then carrying limbs that had been cut from a massive downed tree.

Edward Graham, COO of Samaritan’s Purse, hosted Gov. Sanders and her team on the ground in Arkansas. He too visited with homeowners to offer comfort in a time of crisis.

“You just need to be there to listen after so much heartbreak and so much destruction,” Graham said. “I always want to be ready to give a reason for my hope when they ask me, ‘Why? Why are you here?’ I want them to know that I love you, but more importantly Jesus loves you, and that’s why He sends us.”

Graham visited three residents, praying with them and signing for each a Bible, which volunteers also signed. Among the storm-affected was Libby Rhodes. Multiple large trees fell on her property, narrowly missing her home. She bought the home for the trees, and she cried when she first saw the damage.

“We’re glad you’re OK, that you were protected,” Graham told her.

Edward Graham speaks with Libby Rhodes.

Edward Graham speaks with homeowner Libby Rhodes.

“Yeah, that was some real protection,” Rhodes said. “I’ve lived through six tornadoes, but they didn’t last, you know 15 seconds, two minutes. This one sounded like a jet engine with peat moss being thrown in it for 45 minutes.”

Dozens of Samaritan’s Purse interns are also serving this week in Arkansas to gain another perspective on the ministry’s many-faceted disaster relief operations. “There’s a lot of devastation, but it’ll be a rewarding experience like no other,” Graham said as he introduced the young employees to Gov. Sanders.

Samaritan’s Purse still has more than 400 open work orders in Arkansas. We praise God that we’ve been able to help 20 homeowners so far and for four salvations. We are scheduling volunteers into July.


It has been a difficult spring for many as deadly storms have hit the central and southern states hard this year. Samaritan’s Purse is also working right now in Texas, Iowa, Florida, and Oklahoma. Please keep praying for those affected and for our teams.

Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders (in black) and her mom, former Arkansas First Lady Janet Huckabee, served among Samaritan's Purse orange-shirted volunteers on June 2 in Rogers, Arkansas.

Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders (in black) and her mom, former Arkansas First Lady Janet Huckabee, served among Samaritan’s Purse orange-shirted volunteers on June 2 in Rogers, Arkansas.

U.S. Disaster Relief Samaritan's Purse mobilizes and equips thousands of disaster relief volunteers to provide emergency aid to U.S. victims of wildfires, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, and other natural disasters. In the aftermath of major storms, we often stay behind to rebuild houses for people with nowhere else to turn for help.

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