Driving out to the landslide today was a little bit of a walk down memory lane. Where it occurred is literally just a few blocks from where I went to high school…and not all that far away from my parents’ house.
Throughout the afternoon, there were tons of teenagers (and neighbors) coming by to ogle the site, but they — like me — couldn’t get close enough to see much of anything. For safety reasons, the area closest to the slide was completely blocked off, except for firefighters and residents.
While on the scene, our priority was to make sure those affected had something to eat, a safe place to spend the night and the emotional support needed to begin rebuilding their lives. We were completely ready to open a shelter (we had one on standby), but as it turned out, insurance took care of the overnight stays. We did, however, provide three families with financial assistance to cover the cost of food and clothing.
As you can see from the photo, we had two emergency response vehicles with blankets, snacks and beverages for families and emergency responders. A mental health volunteer was also on hand to provide emotional support.
This sort of thing is all in a day’s work for the Oregon Trail Chapter. Our emergency responders hustled to get to the scene, bring emergency vehicles, start client casework and do what needed to be done. A special thanks to Rodney for coordinating from the chapter, Bob for being our Red Cross incident commander and to the other volunteers who gave up their day to help.
Want to help with disaster response yourself? Consider joining us as a volunteer.