West Virginia floodwaters leave critical need for volunteers

Thursday, June 30, 2016
Bill Bumpas (OneNewsNow.com)

flood relief efforts in WV June 2016Widespread flooding in West Virginia has killed 23 and left thousands homeless, but compassionate help is arriving.

A disaster relief organization is asking for volunteers to help with flood cleanup in West Virginia.  

The catastrophic flooding in the Mountain State has resulted in damage to thousands of homes. Hope Reigns, a ministry division of Eight Days of Hope, is bringing in volunteer crews to clean up houses and help owners find and salvage items. Hope Reigns director Chris Chiles describes what he saw when assessing one particular home in West Virginia. 


"The guy can't get in and out of his property because there's a house – someone else's house - in the middle of his driveway,” he says. “It just floated downstream and ended up in his place. It’s some of the worst flooding I've ever seen."

Chiles tells OneNewsNow more volunteers are needed.

"We've got crew leaders here, we've got equipment, but we need bodies,” he says. “We just need anybody who can help. They don't need to know how to do anything. If they can sit with a homeowner and just look through photos and sit with them and pray with them, we could use their help. If they can cook, help our cooking team, or if they can get in and pull sheet rock, we desperately need volunteers."

The international Christian relief organization Samaritan's Purse is also deploying a disaster response team along with a tractor-trailer stocked with tools and emergency supplies. Program manager Bruce Poss is on site in the Mountain State and describes the devastation. 

"It's a mountainous terrain, and so the water flows down the mountainsides into these creeks and rivers, and just the force of the water has been devastating,” he says. “Houses have been moved off of foundations and blown away. People have four or five, or eight feet of water in their houses." 

Poss tells OneNewsNow they are helping flood victims clean out their damaged homes.

"These communities are kind of in a daze not knowing which way to go, where to start, and the work that Samaritan's Purse does helps them to make that next step,” he continues. “And then once they make that step, then there's another step and another step - and that carries the hope of Christ. And then when those divine appointments come, just being able to share the gospel with folks is important to us."

Samaritan's Purse teams go into homes to tear out damaged drywall, remove flooring, clear debris and spray chemicals designed to stop mold growth.

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