Hurricane Florence made landfall on September 14, 2018 causing a flood crisis throughout the Carolinas. The subsequent record-breaking rainfall from this storm system led to many flash floods, road closures, power outages, and emergency evacuations. Despite weakening into a Category 1 storm, 90mph winds uprooted trees and left 80,000 people without electricity. Sadly, 48 individuals lost their lives as a result of Hurricane Florence.
Our team is currently working in New Bern, North Carolina, a city severely impacted by Florence. Upon arrival, we set up the Volunteer Reception Center (VRC) which opened on Friday, September 21, 2018. According to city officials, the largest need at the time in this community was volunteer coordination at that time. Thanks to our partner, Information Technology Disaster Resource Center (ITDRC), the VRC was adequately equipped to process incoming volunteers.
Having completed nearly four months of response work, we have transitioned towards recovery efforts. Our initial attention was focused on activities such as assessments of the affected area, mucking and gutting, debris removal, residential flood clean up and chainsaw work. We then shifted our focus to mold sanitation, which was identified as the next critical step in helping homeowners to begin rebuilding their lives.
Our scope has now expanded to include critical repairs on qualifying homes in Pamlico County and Craven County. As a critical repair program, we will serve the most vulnerable populations (elderly, disabled, veterans, children, low income, etc.) still living in their homes. Critical repair work includes installing drywall, insulation, basic cabinetry and appliances, to help make their homes safe and comfortable – a critical step in helping homeowners begin rebuilding their lives.
We are now exploring opportunities for community recovery, by rebuilding a community center. While the media attention is gone, the need here is still great.
All Hands and Hearts arrives early and stays until the job is done. The time to get involved is now. Please make a donation or register to volunteer today!
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