Volunteers build new neighborhood for some washed away by Hurricane Matthew
Posted June 23
Pinetops, N.C. — The scars from Hurricane Matthew still dot the landscape. Eight months after the storm, many are still homeless, but thanks to the efforts of groups like Samaritan's Purse, the number of people who need shelter is going down.
In Pinetops, on Pitt Street at Bruton Craft Lane, a swath of once-empty lots is becoming a new neighborhood. Samaritan's Purse is building 20 new homes for families who lost everything.
"It was flooded out, flooded in Hurricane Mathew," James Horne said. He is one of those getting a new home, all for free through the work of the charity.
- WRAL archive: Hurricane Matthew in North Carolina
- Day-by-day flooding: Hurricane Matthew interactive map
- Hurricane Matthew photos by town
It's a miracle. I never thought it would happen. Oh, it's a wonderful thing," he said.
Horne's new home is simple – two bedrooms, a kitchen and living room – but that's all that's needed to help rebuild the life he has made in the town.
Volunteers like Lydia Richardson are willing to give their time and sweat to see that second chance.
"It's stressful, but it's for something good," she said. "I'm just doing it for the Lord."
Justin Riddle of Samaritan's Purse points out that it's not the first time many Edgecombe County residents have battled back from a devastating flood.
"The majority of them have been flooded twice, so for them to receive a new home, particularly in the later stage of life, kind of gives them an opportunity they wouldn't have otherwise and gives them a chance to see God's love through us," he said.
Nearly 750 Samaritan's Purse volunteers put in 18,000 hours of service to help the Pinetops area of Edgecombe County rebuild.