Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Disaster Relief / Minot, ND

We hadn't gone far on our trip when we began to see the results of flooding.

We began seeing sandbags lining the Interstate to keep the water off the roadway.
Soon we began to run into detours.

The first disaster was ME!  

I couldn't help with the food preparation,
because I couldn't get too far away from the Port-A-Potties!
I began to wonder why I had come!

While I was resting and recovering from my bout of intestinal flu in my "room" in the back of the church sanctuary, my team-mates were busy preparing hundreds of meals to be delivered by the Red Cross and the Salvation Army.

After the food was delivered to displaced flood victims and the relief workers, the empty cambros were brought back to the disaster relief headquarters for sanitation...  ready to be filled for the next meal.

Over 18,000 meals were prepared by our team in one week! The cambros were amazing to keep the food piping hot until it was served.  Breakfast was fixed for the relief workers.  Lunch and dinner were prepared for distribution to shelters, relief workers, and delivered to some homes by the Red Cross and the Salvation Army.

The smell of coffee and the cooking of breakfast began shortly after 5:00 A.M.  For the first three days, I couldn't stand the smell of food.  Because of that, I was quite happy to be able to  spend a day in the laundry unit.    Relief workers were limited in the amount of clothing they could bring because of limited cargo space in travelling, so a laundry service was provided.  Bags of dirty clothes began appearing at the back of the "laundry camper" before 8:00 AM, and returned clean before the end of the day.  With close to 75 relief workers, it made quite a bit of laundry! 

Piles of dirt and sand could be seen throughout the flooded region.  Some of the piles were ground levees that had been made to try to keep the flood waters out.  Other piles were made from the removal of sand and dirt from the houses that were flooded.  This removal was called "Mudding Out" and was done by one of our disaster relief teams from Kentucky.  Often, the walls had to be torn down all the way to the two by fours in order to preserve the house structure.

It's hard to believe that a river that now looks so calm could be the cause of all this destruction.  Over 4100 homes were destroyed - almost one fourth of the total population of Minot, ND!   Cold weather comes soon to this town close to the Canadian border, and much more work is needed.  Please pray for the disaster relief workers and the people of Minot.

What a week! 
 It was a lot of work,
but so worth the JOY in being able to SERVE!

Linking with:Alphabe-Thursday,


JDaniel4's Mom said...

So ms y meal were able to be served. How wonderful! I am glad you felt better by the end of the trip.

Annesphamily said...

I have been sending my box tops to ND. I am stunned by the devastation. What a superb job people do volunteering their time and I am glad you felt better. You did a wonderful thing helping in such a selfless way. Thank you for sharing with us. Anne

Riet said...

What a beautiful job people do volunteering in these needy places. I am glad you are feeling better .
Have a nice day.

Alice said...

Thanks for sharing so well, and with pictures! It really helps us understand more of the need. God bless you, sis, and your precious husband and all those other volunteers, who so selflessly help. You are surely showing Jesus' love in that process as well. Blessings!

Sue said...

It's wonderful that you participated in this service. And I'm sure the blessings far outweighed the sacrifice. But oh, am I sorry for you that you had to get sick during it. Especially THAT kind of sick.

I always want to be nowhere but home at times like that...


Self Sagacity said...

Wow, this is a great post, thanks for sharing.
Double link-up, come join the conversations every Thursday and Post your questions on Thursday Two Questions Meme

Pamela said...

A beautiful service for the needy and for God. I enjoyed following your pictures. 18,000 meals just blows my mind! As well as laundry for 75. Whew!

☆☆Mumsy said...

Bless you as you are helping others!

Jedidja said...

God bless you. It touched me to see this pictures.

Karen said...

Thank you for sharing this. Praying for you.

Misty said...

This is wonderful.. helping others. Thank you for sharing.


Sarah (Nikki) said...

even though you were give and help and serve...sounds like a great way to spend time....helping others....

Jenny said...

Bless your heart!

What a sweet and determined post.

I admire your ability to give in spite of your illness.

I think you are spectacular!

Thanks for sharing this.


Kaye - SandwichINK for the Sandwich Generation said...

Awesome. And another good reason God brought you? To share this with others and encourage others to do the same. :) Have a blessed Spiritual Sunday.

Charlotte said...

What a blessing for you to be able to provide his service, and what a blessing for those who received it. Thank you for sharing these experiences with us. There have been so many disasters lately in all parts of the world.

Ginger~~Enchanting Cottage said...

We need people like you, I agree with Charlotte it is a blessing that you were able to help.

EG Wow said...

Flooding sure has been a major problem this year in that in North Dakota and in Manitoba, the Canadian province just north of ND.

Janis@Open My Ears Lord said...

What a blessing to be part of a way to help others recover from such tremendous loss.