Volunteers, agencies converge to help flood victims

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by QUITA CULPEPPER / KVUE News and Photojournalist DENNIS THOMAS

kvue.com

Posted on November 4, 2013 at 7:16 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 4 at 7:20 PM

AUSTIN -- Thousands whose lives have been devastated by Central Texas' Halloween floods are looking for help.

Agencies in Austin want to make sure they find it easily. Volunteers have come from as far away as Oklahoma, Arkansas, even the Northeast. Hundreds are doing what they can to make life a little easier for the flood victims.

During the weather event firefighters had to rescue Mary Potts and her husband from their home.

“We tried to get out the front door and couldn't get out the front door,” she said.

Today members of the Southern Baptist Convention knocked on her front door offering to help gut her home for free.

“I'm not crying because I'm sad, I'm crying because of the people. The generosity and the attitude of people,” Potts said.

In each of the flood-ravaged neighborhoods, crews and volunteers are working overtime to clear away the mess.

“What we've been doing is going through 1,036 residential properties doing damage assessments,” said Code Compliance Supervisor Ron Potts.

Code Compliance crews are going from house to house talking with residents about what permits they may need if they plan to rebuild.

Over the weekend they were trained to fill out specific forms for FEMA to help document the need for a possible federal disaster declaration.

The Red Cross continues to work together with the city and the county on local flood relief efforts. Volunteers have been staffing the flood assistance center at the Dove Springs Recreation Center around the clock.

“The most important thing right now is they can come here and get shelter, food, emotional support, replacement medications. Pretty much all of those immediate needs that they may have been putting them off because they didn't want to leave their home,” said the Red Cross’ Bristel Bowen.

Home Depot and several businesses are working together to set up other help centers.

 

Go here for more information on how you can help flood survivors.

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