Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Updates on our trip to Margaretville for flood cleanup--yes you can come!

 To try to save everyone from contacting me separately...
  • We will decide van departure times today at the 5:30 BonaResponds meeting in Murphy (aud).  Best guess is one van will leave on Thursday night (9:30?) and a second van 5:00pm on Friday. 
  • it is unfortunate but yes we do have to be back on Sunday.  HOWEVER, if you want to stay longer, we will help arrange places for you to stay and tools..
  • We do need drivers.  You must be PREAPPROVED by SBU, so please let us know ASAP if you are willing to drive.
  • We will be staying with the Catskill Mountain Christian Center in Margaretville.
  • Most of the work will be mudding out houses.  
  • Thanks to generous donations in the past, we purchased two sump pumps (our other ones were destroyed in Gowanda).  One is a gas powered pump that can pump 16 gallons per minute. 
  • BonaResponds' stars Larry and Bonnie will be in Margaretville by this evening to scout jobs etc.
    They also took about 20-25 gallons of bleach.  Much of this was left over from the floods in Olean area last year. And our new LARGE pump.
 Took part in this morning's NY VOAD meeting.   Some highlights

  • Best description of what it is like is that "it is just like Gowanda in 2009 but it is town after town of the same".
  • Many groups coming together to provide food and water and cleaning supplies, but difficult as needs are widely spread and many stores are closed due to their own flooding.
  • Be sure to have those affected file with FEMA.The Red Cross will likely be getting us cots, but I can not guarantee it yet.  We do have a place to stay in Margaretville, NY.  The area was hit especially hard and in the center of several towns that need help.
  • The Mennonite Disaster Response crew will also be in the area!  They are very very good. :)
here is a map:

View Larger Map

Special requests: laundry detergent, diapers (baby and adult), and baby food.  The grocery store (and many other stores in area) were flooded.  You can drop off these items at 231 Murphy on the SBU campus or at the Allegany Park and Shop (24 N 1st Allegany NY) (our typical Haiti collection spots).

We are open to all who want to help.  Here is a sign up form.  You will also have to sign this waiver form.

Here is a video of recovery efforts in the area:

Here is one during the flood which gives some idea of how high it was (16 feet of water!) Wow:

I will end with two things:

1.  There is a clear need for assistance.  You can and will help people and have a great time.
2. Imagine if you were flooded out.  Or your parents.  Or your grandparents.  Wouldn't you want someone to help.

Open to All.  See for more.

What to bring?  Space in vans may be tight, this is not an exhaustive list, but here are some recommendations:

  1. A good attitude--by far the most important.  We want hard working and flexible people who want to help.  It will be fun even though it won't go as planned.
  2. Work clothes (jeans, long sleeve tee, short sleeve tee, sweatshirt, workboots (ideally steel toed).
  3. Gloves--leather is best IMO
  4. Sun glasses/safety goggles
  5. Sleeping bag (pillow if you want one--yoga block works great and is smaller)
  6. Flashlight
  7. Phone charger
  8. Digital camera, charger
  9. Towel
  10. Toiletries etc (contacts, toothpaste, toothbrush, etc)
  11. Water bottle
  12. Granola bars etc for drive

You can meet us there!  By all means. 
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