Whew, what a day. I spent it in High River, helping those affected by the devastating flood. The state of emergency has now be lifted in Calgary, but not in neighboring communities. Words are hard to find, when it comes to describing the damage.
On my way to High River rodeo grounds, where volunteers were to meet, I could see that many businesses were destroyed. Workers, on the railway bridge were trying to remove trees & lots of debris. Further up the road, the tracks were in a twisted heap.
There were boats on people’s lawns. I saw a house with no doors or windows (the river had flowed right through it). This area was hard hit by the flood. My heart really goes out to everyone that was affected. Stay strong!
The volunteer centre was well equipped with most everything that we needed. They had masks, gloves, bug spray, water etc. It was recommended that volunteers bring a shovel & pail (I brought a wheel barrow).
We were then directed to take a shuttle, which was late showing-up. So a group of us jumped into another volunteer’s truck. I stayed with this group of 6 for the day. The driver was from Okotoks & the rest of us from Calgary.
We drove to an older area of town. Homes were cleaned out & everything was now on the lawns. There was appliances, furniture & garbage piled high. Our job was to fill dumpsters with all the garbage. When one dumpster was full, we’d find another that was empty & so on (we filled a lot of dumpsters today).
While clearing debris from a home, the elderly owners came out to thank us. They were in tears, drained both physically & emotionally (I get tears in my eyes every time I think of them & what I saw). Others thanked us too.
At one point during the day, a van drove up & 2 ladies waved us over. They had refreshments & large zip lock bags with sandwiches & fruit (for each volunteer). This was appreciated! We enjoyed a much needed break (as we looked at the big job ahead).
Wow, what an experience. I am tired & sore, but I am glad that I took the time to do this.
“Hooray” for everyone that has helped, whether your deed be big or small, it all matters! There is still so much work to do. If you can, help out! The spirit of people coming together to help each other, in a time of need, is so important (& warms the heart, it did mine).