Volunteers were in the valley all throughout the winter. And now in the summer months with longer days, they are working hard despite the heat. A constant stream of volunteers have made their way to the Northern Tier for the nine months following the September flood and as our Bill Mich tells us, they will continue to come until the rebuilding is done.
SAYRE, Pa. -- For homeowners on Sayre's east side, the help that volunteers have supplied over the last nine months is invaluable.
"I just cannot stop thanking them enough. There's just not enough words. I mean, it's a miracle," said Sayre resident Jim Spears.
Since the flood in September, the Valley Relief Council has hosted volunteers from across the country who made their way to lend a hand in the rebuilding process. They came to help in the cold winter months and now during the summer, the groups are bigger and they can accomplish much more.
"We currently have two large groups here. We have a large group from, Methodist group, here from just south of Cleveland, Ohio that is about 50 people. We also have a Lutheran Group here from Oley, Pennsylvania," said Valley Relief Council Co-Chair Lucinda Brown.
Homeowners purchase the materials that are needed to make the repairs and the volunteers travel throughout the Valley building and installing whatever is needed.
"We've plumbed in a bathroom shower and toilet and sink. In the kitchen, we've put down sub floor, put the cabinets up and are now in the process of doing the countertop and dropping the sink in," said Scott Williams, of Friendens Lutheran Church in Oley, Pa.
With so many volunteers in town, the Relief Council can't house them all, so many are staying at local churches and showering in the locker room at the high school. But none of them seem to mind.
"We get probably as much out of this, even more than what we give. We think we are doing God's work and there is a lot to be said to the saying, 'it's more blessed to give than to receive,’" Williams said.
More volunteers are scheduled to arrive from out of town and local residents are encouraged to get involved as well. There is still much to be done but with all the extra help, the goal is everyone will eventually be able to return home.