Monday, October 30, 2006

How to Help the 521 Family

Helping a family deal with the loss of their home takes more than cash and material goods. It also takes time. We have already spent several days helping Helen get around to the various agencies in town to coordinate some of the basics (like replacement Social Security cards).

Some people have already volunteered their time and we have assigned the first few tasks, like moving donated goods into storage ready for sorting, and calling around motels to find the best rate on suitable rooms for Helen and her family to stay until they can move into one of the [very few] subsidized apartments in town.

(Of course, if you know of a 3-bedroom apartment/condo/house in St. Augustine that is available for a few months we'd love to hear about it.)

If you want to volunteer, please send an email to with the word "Volunteer" in the subject line. We can then send you our phone number (which we are reluctant to put on the web).

We are currently working on a task list but we already know we need people who are willing to provide some suitable mentoring and positive after-school recreation for 12 year-old Precious. Although Precious attends school during the day, there is a lot of after school time, and weekend time, that is hard to fill when you are staying in a motel and have very few resources.

Hopefully, in about three weeks we will need volunteers to help with the move into an apartment. Beyond that we will be working on the rebuilding plans. We have already had offers of assistance from several contractors (say what you want about building contractors--they often turn out to be some of the most generous souls in the community).


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