MARIANNA, FL (October 21, 2018) – “Every staff member here has lost something. Whether it was power, running water, or their house, every single person here lost something in that storm,” said a staff member of Sunland Center, a community center serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Marianna, Florida.
Hurricane Michael ripped roofs off of buildings, destroyed endless powerlines, and knocked down multiple trees, many of which destroyed local homes and businesses throughout Marianna.
Under normal circumstances, the staff members at Sunland Center are responsible for obtaining their own meals, but due to the increase in supervision needed to serve the residents after the storm, many staff members have been unable to go to their own homes for several days to prepare meals.
“We’ve been feeding 286 residents every day. We’ve been trying to feed the staff too, but it has been challenging. In the past nine days, some of us have only been home twice,” said Heather Walker, a supervisor at Sunland Center. One staff member disclosed that the roof of her apartment caved in and both her and her 4-year-old daughter had to seek refuge in her parents’ house.
The Salvation Army’s local disaster relief team has delivered more than 1,000 hot meals and snacks to more than 200 staff members at Sunland Center this week to support them as they serve others.
As communities throughout Tallahassee work towards recovering from Hurricane Michael, The Salvation Army’s emergency disaster services teams will continue to diligently work with local and government agencies to facilitate resources for those impacted by Hurricane Michael.