FAYETTEVILLE, NC – Many people knew Hurricane Matthew was headed for North Carolina. Many were prepared for the wind and rain- to lose power, prepared to see flooding and find detours around blocked roads. But many weren’t expecting to lose something extremely valuable.
“We can’t find water anywhere,” said Fayetteville resident Kristy Huggins.
Huggins and hundreds more, drove through the parking lot of Manna Church, 5117 Cliffdale Road, hoping for one thing; water.
“This completely caught me off guard,” said Mario Rios “I should have been listening to the news. I was not prepared for this. I didn’t think we would run out of water of all things.”
Many stores ran out during and after the storm and many areas of Cumberland County remained under a boil advisory throughout Monday. Manna Church and The Dream Center teamed up to provide two free cases of water to anyone willing to pick it up.
Pastor Elliot Diaz said, “They’re going to be lining up for as long as we have water.”
In three hours, volunteers managed to give away almost 400 cases of water. Some stopped by to pick up water for their families.
“I’ve been running back and forth between my house and my daughter’s,” said Rios “She’s trying to get by with her two babies.”
Others stopped by to pick up water for their neighbors in need.
“My next door neighbors are poor and really can’t afford anything right now. So, I’m picking some up for them,” said a man who wanted to remain anonymous.
Feed the Hunger, a non-profit based in Graham, NC, dropped off 35,000 meals at Manna Church as well. They plan to cook the meals overnight and start serving the community Tuesday afternoon. In addition, volunteers the church prepared hundreds of sandwiches to feed to first responders across the county.