WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - It may not always be visible to the eye, but our community still needs help even a year after Hurricane Florence.
“We need volunteers," said Annie Anthony, CEO of the Cape Fear Volunteer Center. "We need the people who can lift something. We need the people who might be able to drywall something or take care of the brush that, you know, every hurricane brings debris, so we need people to help with that.”
The center works with agencies across the area, like Habitat for Humanity and Baptist on a Mission. Annie and her team pair those agencies with people to find service opportunities and the past year has been a busy one.
“We plug in the volunteers wherever they can be," Anthony explained. "It could be as simple as picking up brush or as complicated as hanging up the drywall. It could be many, many things. It could be just praying with someone because they’re spirits have been so low because it’s been a year.”
The Cape Fear Volunteer Center has 350 families on a list that have asked for help since Florence. A lot of them are still living on couches, in FEMA trailers, or even with family out of the area.
“Sometimes the people in FEMA trailers only have 15 trash bags full of clothes, so it’s not a very hard move," said Anthony. "But other times the people were able to save their furniture or they’re getting their furniture donated to them and we need to move it back up into their apartments or homes.”
Anthony said our area isn’t seeing as many out-of-town volunteers as we did right after Florence or even this summer.
“We need to rely more on our own homegrown volunteers," Anthony explained. "So that’s why we’re asking New Hanover County residents, Pender, Brunswick… all of y’all to just get a fresh start, look at it with fresh eyes and realize how blessed you are to be in your home, but we still have people that need to get back to normal.”
The Cape Fear Volunteer Center just needs able-bodied people who have a heart for giving and helping put our community back together.
“People with the interest and the compassion for these people, knowing how blessed those of us that are still in our houses are," Anthony said.
Anthony said they really need volunteer project managers. Anyone with any kind of project manager background needed to help run teams of volunteers for some of the bigger projects.
Anthony says they aren’t sending volunteers to the Outer Banks for Hurricane Dorian relief, but she and her team and working to donate supplies. You can visit their website to learn how you can help.