Volunteers work to repair hurricane-damaged Robeson County homes for one year

Pee Dee

Homes are flooded near the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday, May 24, 2019. The threat of potentially devastating flooding continued Friday along the Arkansas River from Tulsa into western Arkansas. (Tom Gilbert/Tulsa World via AP)

FAIRMONT, NC (WBTW) – Even though Hurricane Florence flooded much of Robeson County more than a year ago, volunteer groups say hundreds of families are still displaced.

The Lumberton nonprofit, Community Comes First, and a division of America’s Disaster Relief, Camp Hope, will work to repair damaged homes in Robeson County for a year.

On Monday Anthony Hall, director of Camp Hope, built a volunteer reception center using a tent, where he and other volunteers will live for one year while they repair homes.

“All of a sudden, all the big groups leave and everybody’s gone and people are sitting here with the tops out of their roofs with no help, so that’s our objective, to bring help to them,” Hall said.

“So much of life has gone back to normal, but there are people still in need, living in motels and with relatives; it’s sort of out of sight, out of mind, the emergencies over, and a lot of people have just sort of fell through the cracks,” James Sessoms, a volunteer with Community Comes First said.

“Economically, it saddened me, for people to say well if it rains, it just rains in here, because I don’t have the money to put a roof over my house,” Charles Townsend, Mayor of Fairmont said.

The tent for volunteers is set up in a lot owned by Mayor Townsend.

The groups look to draw volunteers to help repair more than 500 homes in the Robeson County area.

“When we get to fix a home and you get that joy of watching the family go back in there, and you know they’re in there safely, there’s no better joy,” Hall said.

To get involved or to help with the effort, click here.

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