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  • Writer's pictureKristal Kuykendall

Tuesday, 4/4: Day 4 of the Tornado Recovery Marathon: Updated List of Needs & Resources in Arkansas

Wow! You all have stepped up so quickly — yesterday, regular folks just like you all donated over $900 for our Disaster Recovery Team expenses on the ground. It is much-needed.



Our volunteers tackled the hardest-hit areas on the outskirts of Little Rock, where the local aid resources hadn’t yet reached.


So far about 65 people have shown up to help us help clear the homes and properties of 8 Arkansas families who needed someone — anyone — to show up for the heavy lifting. We are thankful you all have supported us in this work.



At one point, while working to clear a particularly enormous, tangled mess of downed trees on a Sherwood-area building, we had five chainsaws running! See the pics here: before, during, and after.


While clearing those trees off the building, our crew discovered a family of squirrels trapped in the downed tree trunk — see photo — and they were rehomed safely!


Unfortunately, the Skylift that volunteer Ben Hurst of Sherwood and the crew from Splash Car Wash brought for the heaviest lifting — enormous trees lying on high roofs — blew a hydraulic Monday so it’s now out of commission till repairs are completed.


FUNDS NEEDED:

The Rural Caucus Disaster Recovery Team fund is in need of donations for fuel to run heavy equipment, tools, and generators; to transport volunteers and equipment to the hardest-hit, under-resourced survivor areas; and to purchase tarps and hardware when needed for emergency repairs.


URGENT NEEDS:

Volunteers are needed TODAY to finish patching up/tarping over holes in roofs in Cabot, Sherwood, North Little Rock — we have a list of requests from the City Halls and police departments in those towns, neighborhoods and homes that no one has been able to get to yet. We are working against incoming weather as well.


If you can help today, please show up at St. Joseph Center (the former orphanage building) at located at 6800 Camp Robinson Road, North Little Rock. (NOTE: Burns Park exit and park roads are closed, so plan to route around that area.)


If you want to join any clean-up crew later in the day or week, text or call us at 870-682-3241 for directions to a crew nearest you.


ALSO TODAY (Tuesday April 4) at 1 pm MOVING HELP NEEDED: We need more volunteers to help the Arkansans move their belongings from the home shown in the top photos into storage units. Please text or call us at 870-682-3241 today if you can show up to help us with this need.


ALSO NEEDED HEAVY EQUIPMENT: We need a Skylift — either donated as a rental or lent temporarily — and a discounted rental would also be welcomed. Please text or call us at 870-682-3241 if you can facilitate this. It will allow clearing of trees off rooftops to go much faster, and there are many more such situations to get to.


TOMORROW WEDNESDAY APRIL 5: Dr. Chris Jones is joining our Disaster Recovery Team for a renewed push, and we may head to Wynne. We will see what the authorities there and in the areas we’re working in today say about the biggest needs after today. Please watch our Facebook, Twitter, or blog for updates.


IN WYNNE: Urgent needs remain urgent there. The list of needs and resources in Wynne that we had in Monday’s blog post remains accurate, to our best knowledge. View the full list on Monday's blog post.


DONATIONS: We have received numerous donations of baby food and diapers, hygiene and first-aid products, sunscreen and towels, and many other things. Except for food and bottled water, Gatorade and so forth that are wonderful helps for our volunteers and the survivors we are helping, most of those donations are being forwarded to the Islamic Center for Human Excellence for distribution into the community. (The center has a solid track record of reaching deep into under-served Arkansas communities.)


If you’d like to donate goods in Central Arkansas, we recommend taking them to the Islamic Center, located at 1717 Wright St., Little Rock. Phone 501-353-1792.



a man kneeling with a chainsaw against a large downed tree truck while he works to cut it up for removal after a tornado
Derek Huber of Baxter County working with the Rural Caucus of Arkansas Disaster Recovery Team volunteers in Sherwood on Monday April 3

NOTABLE THANK YOUS: Yesterday, Derek Huber of Baxter County brought his beauty of a heavy-duty truck, tools, and lots of energy down to join our crew — oh and he brought a coworker as well! It was refreshing to see what civic leadership looks like, up close and when we were — are — so overwhelmed with work needing to be tackled!


Another volunteer whose above-and-beyond action moved us was Chris McJunkins of Faulkner County, who drove all the way down to give us a chainsaw in person, with backup fuel and oil to boot. Thank you, Chris. (That chainsaw is now our Disaster Recovery Team’s first Official Inventory: We are sticking around, folks.)


Kenny Grand of Coy/Little Rock has worked his tail off: recruiting, organizing, ferrying, and working alongside our volunteer work crews, organizing hot meals for volunteers and survivors — and then volunteering for more after the day shift wears out at dusk. We are so thankful to have Kenny on our team!


Thank you for your support! Please pray the storms don’t hit hard again today, and thank you for being the best part of Arkansas!



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