Tennesseeans continue donation efforts for KY flooding victims
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - The death toll keeps rising after devastating flooding hit parts of Kentucky on Thursday. At least 19 people have been killed, according to Gov. Andy Beshear, and six of those are children.
Truckloads of supplies from our region are now heading to assist people impacted by the flooding as the muddy waters have slowly gone down.
Multiple organizations in Middle Tennessee, including Churches of Christ Disaster Relief and the Salvation Army, are stepping forward to send supplies and volunteers.
Churches of Christ Disaster Relief executive director Mike Lewis said they have five trucks that are being packed and should be in the hardest hit areas by the end of the weekend. Each truck includes around $70,000 worth of items purchased from donated money.
The relief kits include brooms, buckets, bottled water, and baby supplies. However, the main focus is on cleaning supplies, new clothes, and food boxes that can feed a family of four for a week.
“Initially, everybody can get food,” Lewis said. “But then those families that are not going to be able to purchase things to get back on their feet, we can help them with that.”
Lewis said the supplies would be handed over to local churches that will distribute them to areas of need and talk with flood victims about other things that might be needed to rebuild a home. For example, Christ Disaster Relief churches often provide families with furniture, appliances, and other essential items.
“We only deliver the supplies; we don’t send people out that stay there,” Lewis said. “We turn it over to a church in the area, and they work with the people because that’s their neighbors. They’re going to see them again. We’re not going to see them again.”
The Salvation Army has also sent 500 flood clean-up kits to Kentucky, with more crews preparing to help.
“We currently have three units that are on standby and ready to go in as soon as we get the safety notice from the state,”
Captain Philip Canning said. Those crews are mainly from Salvation Army locations closer to the devastation. Crews from Nashville have not yet been called in to help, but he expects to be notified soon if their disaster relief teams will be needed.
“We hope by being there and our people being there on the ground, that they will be an aid to those suffering and be able to be the resource they need during this time,” Canning said.
Lewis and Canning said their donations have already ramped up since the flooding started. You can donate online or by calling the individual organization.
Lewis said they need volunteers to help pack more food boxes on Monday morning and send another five trucks to the hardest hit areas. People looking to volunteer can show up at the disaster relief center at 410 Allied Drive by 9:30 a.m. Monday. The food box packing should take a couple of hours, and lunch will be provided for volunteers.
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