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Devastation and recovery from Hurricane Florence


Volunteers helping with disaster relief from Hurricane Florence was the topic of discussion at the Elizabethtown Rotary Club meeting. Rotary President, Col. Roy Allen, Bladen County teacher and Vertical Church member, Anita Willington and Cathy Page with Bladen Crisis Center told the members at the last club meeting about the great need for donations and volunteers in our area because of the damage from Hurricane Florence.

Many hearts are broken because of the destruction and devastation left behind in Bladen County due to Hurricane Florence. However hope has been seen with the outpouring of support. The trio spoke about the distribution center held at Verticle Church, Mercy Chefs, Bladen Crisis Center and the large amount of people helping with recovery efforts both locally and from out of state.

“Everyone is pulling together,” Cathy Page with the Bladen Crisis Center said.

“We all in this community have pitched in and it was really something to see,” Col. Roy Allen, President of the Rotary Club said.

Greg Martin, a Rotary Club member and Bladen County Manager commented, “We have never seen so many people come in with volunteer efforts. That’s what makes the community great.”

Vertical Church was a distribution center for food and supplies the first two weeks. However the distribution center was moved to the Paul H. Sessoms building across town on Cypress Street. The church has become a recovery center handing out nails and things to help recover from the damages.

Supplies and non-perishable food may be donated to the Bladen Crisis Center located at 108 South Cypress St. in Elizabethtown, or at the Bladen County Diaster Relief Distribution Center housed at the Paul H. Sessoms building on Cypress Street in Elizabethtown. There is a desperate need for volunteers at the distribution center as well.

The recovery will take months and hope for assistance is at the forefront of Hurricane victims’ minds. Volunteers are needed Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. One hour time slots are available for people to volunteer.

The club approved a $500 donation to the Bladen Crisis Center to help with the recovery efforts. Anyone needing assistance with property damage may call FEMA at 1-800-621-FEMA.

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