Desiree, a hardworking mom of twin boys, was devastated when her car and home were severely damaged by a flash flood in their hometown of Waverly, Tennessee.
In the aftermath of the storm, a local Conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul was there to help, along with rapid-response grants from the National Council and aid from the SVdP-USA Disaster Services Corporation (DSC).
SVdP volunteers sprang into action to provide the family with new beds, furniture, and other household necessities. The Society was also able to help many other survivors by providing funds that helped with food, transportation assistance, home repairs, mold removal, and other damages not covered by insurance or other organizations.
“I just started crying because I wasn’t expecting this at all,” Desiree recalls with gratitude. “It’s very helpful knowing that we’ll have some beds and things to sleep on once we get back into our house. I thank God for getting us out of there and for the help we’ve been shown from complete strangers.”
Tragically, 20 residents lost their lives in the deluge, including one Vincentian volunteer of the St. Patrick-McEwen Conference. Hundreds of homes and businesses were swept away.
Many weeks after those dark clouds departed, the SVdP “silver linings” continued to shine on families in crisis. Cindy Barnes, a Vincentian volunteer, helped provide handmade quilts to a dozen victims of the flood. “My hope is that we can all just show each other that we care, that it matters to us that they’re suffering, and that we want to do what we can to help them.”
Thank you for empowering the Society of St. Vincent de Paul with the resources we need to provide Vincentian volunteers with financial support, spiritual formation, education, and the training they need to assist our most vulnerable neighbors effectively.