WARM: Volunteer numbers down, but home repair need still up


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — We are sneaking up on the two-year anniversary of Hurricane Florence and families in the Cape Fear still desperately need help repairing their homes.

The Wilmington Area Rebuilding Ministry (WARM) has a history of repairing homes after hurricanes. Executive Director JC Lyle says the ministry was founded in 1996 after Hurricane Fran.

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Lyle says the waitlist since Florence is still very long.

“People were trying to recover on their own and realized they just don’t have the resources,” Lyle said.

She says crews have been sticking to exterior work to follow coronavirus safety guidelines, but, with respiratory health concerns, Lyle says this work is especially important now.

“Since mid-March, we’ve mostly been working outside of the homes,” Lyle said. “So, we haven’t really gone into the homes too much. We’ve started to go back into the homes to finish up some jobs. We have 60 outstanding that we’ve done all the exterior work and we just need to go in and do a few hours of interior work.”

This year there are way less volunteers to help serve, since people are traveling less.

“Well normally we have about 900 volunteers during the spring and summer on mission trips or spring break or alternative spring break trips,” Lyle said. “This year, they’ve really been cut down to about 10% of that this year so far, so we’d love to have more local support.”

Lyle is asking local community to volunteer to meet the demand.

If you’d like to volunteer, visit their website here.