Alpena — A bus carrying 43 community members left Tuesday afternoon in route for Plymouth, Indiana to help victims of flooding.
As part of the National Relief Network, the group will be putting in new drywall, removing debris, and helping restore new life to homes affected by the flooding. A group from Alpena has been helping respond to natural disasters for the past seven years, starting with Hurricane Katrina. What started as a youth mission trip has blossomed into a full community movement, allowing residents from 13 and above to participate. For first time attendee Connie Fluharty, she found the inspiration to go from one of her family members.
“My sister did this [trip] twice when she was in high school” said Fluharty. “I remember the week after she came back and she was just very happy and thankful for the opportunity which I hope to have.”
Back in February of 2018, the Yellow River, which flows through Plymouth, flooded causing heavy damages to communities that sit off the body of water. The cresting of the river hit a record of 17.65 ft. People have not been able to completely recover since the flooding.
“I think I’m going to learn more about my community in helping other communities,” said Fluharty. “We’re going to be down there for an entire week so I may get some ideas of how to help my current community.”
The crew will stay at Ancilla College just outside of town. Funds were provided by grants and donations from the community. They will also be joined by two other groups in Michigan to help the people of the Plymouth. They will come home on Saturday.