Methodist group helps with disaster relief


The United Methodist Conference disaster relief team helped a family Tuesday in Douglass by ripping out wet carpet in their basement and checking their walls after it flooded.

The team responds to those that get in contact with them, and has worked recently all over the greater Wichita area in places like Mulvane, Rose Hill, and Wellington.

"We do what we can," said Hollie Tapley the conference's disaster coordinator. "We're not professionals, but we are trained, so we do know what we're doing, and we go by protocol."

The home they worked on was owned by a family in Douglass. The homeowner noticed water in his basement the next morning after a hard rain.

"Just that sheer amount of rain overflowed the gutters so, just had a flooded basement in the finish rooms," said Evan Black.

According to Black, he was referred to the team by a friend since he had no where else to go and it would have taken to long by himself.

"Made it a whole lot easier for us because we weren't really sure how to get it all coordinated quickly," he said.

He said he had no idea of the extent of the damage or what it would cost them if they had to have someone else do it. So he said he was thankful these volunteer workers were able to save his basement.

"It's certainly a blessing to get that many people," Black said. "It would have taken us a while and I'm not sure how easy it would be to get a contractor with half the town needing the same service."

Hollie Tapley said the team checks for mold and knocks down dry wall, if need be, rip out wet carpet and padding, checks moisture levels in the walls and takes off the baseboards.

She said they do work like this, and other things after other natural disasters such as clean up.

This is one more home saved, according to Tapley, but taking wet belongings is only the beginning since they can't replace them.

"It's good to know we left them clean, safe, secure, but yet on the other side, it's still painful because we know they still have a long way to go," Tapley said.