Monday, February 17, 2014

Community Arsenal of Supplies Helps Army of Volunteers Clean Up Estes Park

Clean-up and recovery from the September floods is far from over in Estes Park. This weekend, local residents in charge of long-term recovery are expecting 80-90 people to stop by Stanley Park for gear before heading out to continue post-flood clean up in the Big Elk Meadows area of Estes Park.

“It started with a combination of folks who would, regardless of their situation, jump in and help,” said Chris Moody, a member of the Rocky Mountain Evangelical Free Church who is serving in a leadership role in the Rocky Mountain Assist Recovery Team and the Estes Valley Long Term Recovery Group.

A unique local partnership is lending a hand to the helpers – providing a collective resource center where volunteers can borrow the various tools they need to complete their volunteer work in Estes Park. Rocky Mountain Evangelical Free Church lends its arsenal of supplies to individual residents, volunteer
teams, and businesses participating in flood clean-up in the Estes Park area.

Items range from generators to power washers, to basics such as cleaning supplies. The resources have moved around quite a bit since they were collected shortly after the September floods - including being stored in the church and its pastor’s home.

Now, thanks to a unique community partnership, the resources have found a designated spot in the
Estes Park Fair Ground at Stanley Park.

Recently, community partners came together to construct a shed to house all of these supplies and make them readily available. The shed itself is operated by the City of Estes Park on land donated by the Estes Park Fairgrounds. The American Red Cross supplied the shelving to organize the supplies within the shed, and also contributed Tyvek suits, safety goggles, and gloves.

Moody recalls the Estes Park community in the days following the flood as “devastated and hopeless.” He was one of many residents to collect items for the community to use, free of charge, and without the hassle of renting. Their goal was to help people who were “just trying to get back into their homes.”

The collective effort has made it easier for volunteers to help Estes Park recover, thus contributing to renewed hope and real recovery in this small community.

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