A Hurricane Charity Jam and supply drive will take place tomorrow as a group of local volunteers prepare to leave and aid in ongoing disaster relief efforts following Hurricane Florence.

Lori O’Doherty of Oceola Township is a DRAW responder and will join a group of volunteers to help with restoration efforts. She volunteers with the non-profit DRAW or Disaster Relief at Work. The organization is dedicated to providing relief to communities that have been hit by natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes or tornadoes. Volunteers collect supplies and dedicate their time to help with whatever is needed. Five gallon buckets are filled with the supplies to meet the immediate needs of disaster survivors and passed out.

This will be O’Doherty’s 5th natural disaster, as she has volunteered in the wake Hurricanes Harvey and Irma and most recently Houghton in the Upper Peninsula following massive flooding that caused historic damage. She tells WHMI after natural disasters, volunteers will go into an area and help people save their homes. Once the water recedes, O’Doherty says they’ll pull carpet, drywall and anything else to try and save a home before the mold sets in, adding a lot of people will lose their homes to mold. O’Doherty says the people they help are so appreciative and working right alongside you but there is so much need, you just want to help everybody. O’Doherty and her daughter will leave Friday with other volunteers and fly in to the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport in New Bern, North Carolina. It just resumed commercial operations Monday after five days of no airline flights.

Thursday’s fundraiser and supply drive at the Howell Elks Lodge will feature a car show, food and drink specials, live music, a 50/50 raffle and a silent auction. The event runs from 6:30 to 10:30pm and donations of cash, cleaning and personal supplies will be collected. Some needed items include heavy duty trash bags, five gallon buckets and lids, latex gloves, scrub brushes and air freshener. After all of the supplies are collected, they will be taken to the DRAW headquarters and warehouse in Waterford to be divided up into personal supply buckets and cleaning buckets before being shipped to North and South Carolina.

Donations can be dropped off any time after 3pm at the Howell Elks Lodge on Grand River. Financial donations can be made online through the link to DRAW. (JM)