Volunteering in Midland with GLE PrecisionNathan Binder
After seeing the devastating effects of the flooding caused by the Edenville dam failures, GLE wanted to help. On Monday, GLE offered employees the opportunity to participate in an offsite workday, during which they would be volunteering in Midland. Almost half of our staff responded, excited to be able to help.
Our Experience Volunteering in Midland
To maximize our impact, we coordinated our efforts through Samaritan’s Purse which has a plethora of experience with disaster relief. It was clear that they will be in the area for a long time; evidence of damage was everywhere. Piles of furniture, drywall, cabinets, and a seemingly endless amount of other possessions ruined by floodwaters lined the streets. These piles showed us that most homes are being ripped out down to the studs at the minimum. We spoke with homeowners who told us their gut-wrenching stories of leaving possessions behind to escape. Our site leader had to have tough conversations with the homeowner about what could be saved.
Throughout the day, we ripped out drywall, removed drop ceilings, tore up flooring, cleaned out insulation, and more. Some of the most memorable items included pulling out a 400-pound metal tub from a cramped bathroom and a gas fireplace base which required a sledgehammer to remove piece-by-piece. These challenges helped us to bond as a team, as well as realize the impact we had on the community. The owner of the tub remarked that he did not know how he would have gotten the tub out without us, and the owner of the fireplace was incredibly grateful for our aid.
How to Help
Not everyone has the ability to spend a day volunteering with their coworkers in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, organizations like Samaritan’s Purse and United Way are working daily to help those impact by the flooding and the pandemic. Even if you can’t get a group of friends or family to join you, both organizations love to accommodate individual volunteers. You can sign up to help with the Midland flooding here through Samaritan’s Purse and view United Way opportunities here.