'Hope for Harvey' Mission Group Returns

February 11, 2018 11:03 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- Nearly six months after Hurricane Harvey caused catastrophic damage, the cleanup continues.

A group of people from the Christ United Methodist Church in Rochester are back from lending a hand in the severely affected area; Orange County, Texas.


“I just felt so sad to leave because there's so much more that needs to be done down there,” said Carole Drath.

Drath was one of 11 on the "Hope for Harvey" mission trip. From January 28th to February 3rd, the Rochester crew helped rebuild one woman’s house in Mauriceville, Texas.

“They are not in the big city the way people in Houston and New Orleans have gotten attention,” said Katy Lee, both a Pastor at the local Methodist Church and a Co-Organizer of the trip. “It wasn't about just getting in and making things happen. It was about making that human connection and reminding Lennette and her family that they are not forgotten.”

Lennette Haynes was one of many to lose her home to Harvey. “In our County [Orange County], 70% of the homes were flooded,” she said.

Shortly after the hurricane, Haynes lost her husband too. “Until you have lost everything, you don't really realize what that means.”

Haynes has been living in a FEMA trailer next to her house.

“The group from Minnesota is the third group that had been working on my house,” said Haynes. 

Spending their days putting up drywall and mudding, members of the Rochester church were able to put up new walls before they left. In the face of so much devastation, their desire to serve made all the difference to Haynes.  “You know they were God-sent people,” she said. “It makes me want to cry. I’ll always be indebted to them.”

Those on the trip were left in awe of Haynes’ strength,  “I have never met someone quite that positive,” said Drath.

“It’s not how many time you get knocked down, it’s how many you get up and how you get up,” said Haynes.

Haynes is optimistic she will be back in her home by the end of summer. 


Hannah Tiede

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