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As this violent storm wreaks havoc on communities across Southeastern Texas and Southwestern Louisiana, United Ways throughout the region are helping families face devastating losses from the historic flooding with an eye toward long-term recovery.  We emphasize “long-term recovery” as local United Way’s throughout South Carolina are STILL repairing and rebuilding homes from our very own natural disasters.

The largest of its kind to make landfall in the United States since 2005, Hurricane Harvey is leaving a wake of destruction in its path—but there is hope. From the 2015 historic flooding to Hurricane Matthew, our United Way coordinated community responses to help those affected.

Whether by raising funds to aid in relief efforts, engaging first-responders, or mobilizing partners to help with on-the-ground long-term recovery, United Ways offer hope and help when it is most needed. 

United Way of Sumter, Clarendon and Lee Counties continues to rebuild and repair our community through the Tri-County Long Term Recovery Group.  The road ahead for these communities is long.   We know that.  Our local communities are still in the recovery phase of natural disasters from the previous 2 years.

South Carolina is approaching the 2-year anniversary of the October 2015 flooding and the 1-year anniversary of Hurricane Matthew.  We emphasized long-term recovery, because we still have several pages full of clients needing assistance.  This past month we have finished all the repairs in 2 client’s homes and will be hosting a ribbon cutting for both clients next week as they are able to live back in the place they call home!

As snapshots of communities hit the hardest show the scale of damage throughout the media outlets, similarities can be seen between our community and those affected by Hurricane Harvey. 

To-date, the Tri-County Long Term Recovery Group has completed 16 homes all in the Sumter, Clarendon and Lee Counties areas of disaster.  We are on track to rebuild several more homes by the end of the year. 

All rebuilding of homes has been done in partnership with local and out-of-state volunteers.  In total, we have had over 500 volunteers give over 20,000 hours of dedicated service to our community to help with our recovery efforts.