Monday December 28, 2015

Islamic Relief Responds to York Floods

With half the city centre under water and river levels rising on December 27, the volunteers worked from midday until gone midnight to fill over 3,500 sandbags with over 110 tonnes of sand and then deliver the bags to families facing the biggest threat of flooding.

One grateful recipient was York resident Patrick, who told our team: ”We’re really worried about what the water is going to do to our house when it reaches us. We know that nearby neighbourhoods have been affected and a lot of properties have been damaged.

“We’ve been ringing around all day for sandbags and there have not been enough to go round. We are so grateful to be getting these sandbags so we can try and protect our house from the flood that we are being told will reach our house by tomorrow.”

On December 28 the rain eased and the level of some rivers stabilised, so our volunteers are now focusing their attention on helping families clean up homes that succumbed to the flooding. One of the first beneficiaries, Jordan, said he was glad of the help to clear his house because he had nowhere else to go.

“We’ve had volunteers from Leeds, from Bradford, from Hull – first helping families prevent flood water getting into their homes and then helping with the clean-up,” says Zia Salik, Islamic Relief’s National Community Fundraising and Volunteer Manager.

“At the start of Sunday the council only had eight volunteers filling sandbags, so they were really happy to have our support. In just one long day we reckon our volunteers provided around £5,000 worth of free labour in minimum wage terms. The local MP, Rachael Maskell, tweeted her thanks and said we were doing a great job.”

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