One of the volunteer opportunities that we felt a connection with while we were in Tuscaloosa was helping out with the lunch services and the distribution center at the Church of Christ in Forest Lake. Despite the church being taken out of commission by the tornado, the church was able to use its resources and get a tent up to get people the house hold necessities required to keep moving forward with their lives as well as a mobile home that was built with a large kitchen in order to assist in disaster relief. Through this kitchen, we served residence and volunteers breakfast and lunches so we knew that people were getting fed. In our span of assisting the church with their efforts, we served about 8,000 lunches.
The main reason we kept going back to this particular spot to volunteer was because of the people that were helping out and it was the best possible way to get a one-on-one with the residence to hear what they truly needed. Those are the moments that we heard the stories that aren’t told in the “success stories” that tell us that Tuscaloosa is alright. These are the bold reminders that the residence need much more help still and that this can happen anywhere in our large community called the United States.
The other volunteers that we met while we were on the lot were from all over. Indiana, Illinois, West Virginia, Texas, Florida, Georgia and so many other states. The two men running the show were Mike and D.D. D.D. became our friend instantly and ventured out with us every time we went out to explore Tuscaloosa. Mike was the director of this particular motor home from the Church of Christ disaster assistance. If you are interested to find out where he is headed next, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org to get on his email list.
We also had a great chance to meet some of the congregation from the church. Joe, Debbie and Claudia were our three continuous favorites and now that Alyssa will be down there for a while with her new job, she will be in contact with them.
These pictures are a montage of the people and work we were doing while volunteering at the lot. This opportunity had such an enormous impact in our journey and we are so thankful for everyone we met while we were there.