Saturday was supposed to be graduation day for the latest class of Leadership Crawford County participants.
Instead, the participants spent their weekend collecting food, hygiene and clothing items for flood victims in Crawford County.
The results were several truckloads of items that can help those families displaced by the flood.
“We took three truckloads to Dyer for families displaced there and we just got back from taking two loads to the First Assembly of God in Van Buren that are going to help displaced families in Dyer as well as the Park Ridge RV campers,” said Janet Petty, who is the coordinator for Leadership Crawford County.
The Leadership Crawford County representatives were set up at Walmart in Van Buren from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. They collected such food items as bottled water, baby food and formula, easily prepared foods, canned foods and pet food and hygiene items like body wash and shampoo, deodorant and razors, sanitary pads, toilet paper and paper towels and toothpaste and toothbrushes. They also accepted donations of clothing and household items such as all sizes of undergarments, all sizes of shoes and socks, linens, towels, washcloths and cleaning supplies.
“We’ve got to concentrate now on feeding these people,” said Petty. “We’ve got to get the word out that First Assembly is storing items and has them available to give out to people who have been displaced by the flood.”
Petty said according to the emergency management officials there were nine families displaced in Dyer. One of those families was staying at the community center in Dyer while the others were in hotels.
“They all come together to eat at the community center,” she said.
Three of those families have dogs. The homes of seven of the families were completely destroyed.