Community leaders meet with Long-term Recovery Committee to plan flood recovery

By: Kalea Gunderson | Jan. 11, 2017 | Source: WCHSTV

Recovery Committee is in need of volunteers in order to finish rebuilding homes in flooded areas of the Kanawha County. (WCHS/WVAH)

In the areas of Kanawha County affected by June’s flood, there is a mix of needs. While many families are rebuilding their homes, some haven’t even started, and recovery organizations can’t do it all. They need volunteers.

Churches, businesses, state and local leaders were all invited to meet under one roof Tuesday night to come up with a plan on how they can help flood victims recover.

Lois Broyles is a disaster case manager, who sees, every day, the conditions many Clendenin families are still living in.

“We have families with children who are are living in trailers with not running water or have no heat, or have floors that are falling through,” Broyles said.

Mountain Mission and the Greater Kanawha Long-Term Recovery Committee have been working together to meet the needs of those families. Executive Director of the Recovery Committee, Mike Shinn says they can’t do it without volunteers.

“We would have weeks of 150 to 100 volunteers, but then all the sudden when November and December hit, we had a few more groups coming from out of state, but our local volunteer base dropped to 10 to 15 people a week,” Shinn said.

Shinn says while much of the debris has been cleaned out of the homes, it’s simple rebuilding materials and labor that many families don’t have and can’t afford.

Executive Director of Mountain Mission, John Roberts says the purpose of the meeting was to hear reports of what has been accomplished since June and develop a plan of action for how to finish the work that has already been started.

“This is what we need to carry on, to make sure this recovery comes as fast and has the quality that these families deserve,” Roberts said.

Moving forward in the recovery process, Broyles says the most important thing for the community to remember is that the need is still very real.

“The need is still great. It isn’t like it was great after the flood and now it’s okay, but the need is still very great,” Broyles said.

The main goal of the meeting was to build a network of volunteers and skilled laborers, who are ready and available to help.