University of Missouri students lend Wilmington a helping hand in rebuilding efforts

University of Missouri students lend Wilmington a helping hand in rebuilding efforts

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - It’s all hands on deck as Hurricane Florence recovery continues in our area, and some students from the University of Missouri are lending a hand.

Missouri student Olivia Flagg-Bourke is one of the dozen students who came to volunteer.

“It’s not just fun. It also feels good on the inside because there’s this loose week where I would just be sitting on my butt back home watching TV constantly and instead I’m out here and I’m doing something to help improve the community," Flagg-Bourke said. “It’s nice to help a community that’s, like, not my own.”

Vigilant Hope Inc. is an organization that helps make a positive change in the community, and is also hosting the students.

“We’re just empowering them to go have an experience here in Wilmington and hopefully they can take this back to Missouri with them,” Vigilant Hope Executive Director Jeremy Hardy said.

For the past two days, they’ve worked on the Hope House roof, which was completed Wednesday afternoon.

The workers are learning more than just roofing.

“We reached out to the Hope House and they were in desperate need of a roof," Hardy said. “We were able to provide volunteers.”

In addition to rebuilding houses, the volunteers are helping those who don’t have a place to call home.

Student Macey Mitchell hopes to apply lessons learned in Wilmington to help the homeless in her community.

“They gave us a little list of things to keep in your car for whenever you run into homeless people," Mitchell said. “One of the first things I’m going to do is get a pack and put it in my car so if I see people, you know how to assess them properly.”

Flagg-Bourke says the past few days have taught her to always remember what’s important in life.

“College can be a really isolating experience," she said. “You’re in such a little bubble while you’re at school and just remembering to get back into the community I think is really important.”

The students plan to volunteer at the local food pantry and cook dinner for those in need.

Copyright 2019 WECT. All rights reserved.