Hurricane Matthew Aftermath
"The spirit of our incredible community is shining through the devastation created by Hurricane Matthew." Betsy Doughtie , Executive Director
Phase 1 Recovery
When our clients returned to their homes they found, a refrigerator filled with spoiled food. How were they to buy food to feed their family when those we help are not paid for time missed from work? Many missed a full week from their jobs due to the storm. And, if they had money set aside before the storm, it was used to pay evacuation expenses.
Calls started coming into our office immediately after we reopened. Although we were not as well stocked as we usually are, our Pantry Manager, Jean Vahey, created a distribution plan that insured all those who came those first couple of days went home with food.
Towards the end of that first week, word had spread that our pantry was low and, because of that shining, grand donations of food began to arrive to replenish our shelves.
Phase 2 Recovery
Our Deep Well Project has interacted with agencies, organizations, and individuals to help our fellow islanders in this emergency. On behalf of those we serve, great thanks go out to all who are supporting Deep Well, some are listed below:
- The Town of Hilton Head, along with all the first responders, who cleared the roads in record time and made sure that power, water, and sewer were functioning.
- Church groups who were instrumental in clearing property of debris, including removing trees from homes and tarping roofs to prevent further damage.
- The local Red Cross set up emergency shelters, and when they closed down, our churches opened their doors.
- Our home grown Islander Byron Sewell captured the spirit of Hilton Head with his “Welcome Home” sign, then partnered with the Salty Dog to produce T-shirts. The shirt proceeds have gone to Deep Well to be used for hurricane recovery.
- Hilton Head Island High School waived the admittance fee to a home football game, and instead asked for food donations for Deep Well. Our big truck was totally filled with food, not only from the high school but from Hilton Head Elementary School as well.
- The Community Foundation of the Lowcountry, Hilton Head Rotary Club, and United Way of the Lowcountry all made substantial financial contributions to Deep Well designated for hurricane recovery. Our Livable Housing volunteers will continue to use these funds for months to restore damaged structures back into livable homes.
- The Belfair 1811 Charitable Fund awarded a special grant to Deep Well to be used in hurricane recovery in the greater Bluffton community.
- The SERG Group chose Deep Well as the beneficiary of an event on October 28th, with donations being matched by The SERG Group and Tito Vodka.
- Hundreds of private individuals have made monetary contributions so Deep Well can help our neighbors return to a stable life.
(The above appeared in The Island Packet, November 12, 2016)