Volunteers and employees are working at Multi-Agency Resource Centers (MARCs) on behalf of The Salvation Army in various locations across Northeast Oklahoma. (A MARC provides a central location for representatives from government, nonprofit, and faith-based disaster relief organizations to answer questions, provide information, and disaster-related assistance.)
“I get very sad listening to survivors’ stories of losing everything. They have lost their homes, cars, and sentimental things like family heirlooms,” shared Eiiko Brown, from Lawton, Oklahoma. “I can’t imagine losing everything.” And despite their loss, they want to go back to their homes. Brown explains, “Many of their homes have been condemned as uninhabitable, yet they want to try to save a few things yet are afraid to see how bad it is.” Brown is grateful to be of service to disaster survivors and remembers as a child how her family would not have had a Christmas without the help of The Salvation Army.
Approximately six years ago, Heather Millar, Regional Recovery Program Manager in Texas, went to work for The Salvation Army after the May 2013 tornadoes in Oklahoma. She shares “I am amazed at the resiliency of the people. They have been through so much yet are upbeat, avowing they are going to recover.” Millar goes on to share how impressed she has been when asking survivors if there is anything they need. Often, she has heard of neighbors and churches coming together to muck out and gut homes affected by the flooding. It is great to hear about close-knit communities.