The Nashville flood of 2010 brought many difficult days and difficult things...
...but as is often the case, storm clouds may have a silver lining. The rising waters brought us all together for one cause and made associates and friends of people we had never even met.
In Southeast Nashville, churches and organizations came together in a great symphony of oneness and formed Southeast Nashville Recovery.
From managing home clean outs and rebuilds, to feeding people who couldn’t even cook a meal for themselves because their homes had been devastated, many of us worked in the community to help our neighbors get back to a new normal. In the summer of 2012, after completing work on 312 homes, we completed what we had been asked to do.
But we were changed. We saw what it looks like to cross all kinds of preconceived barriers and join hands with each other and work for a common cause.
After some serious rest and regrouping, we agreed that our work had uncovered other unmet needs, and we should remain united to address them. Input from the community and from Second Harvest emphasized the need for a good food pantry. We researched and investigated and opened in April of 2013 to feed families in three zip codes.
In the days following, we began to uncover some of the reasons that lead our families to a need for food support, and with our eye always toward finding solutions, we worked to implement ways to get to the root of the issues. We come beside veterans and people on fixed incomes as life can be quite challenging, and we can help to lighten the burden just a little. As we can, we encourage those that are able to find long term solutions. We try to help people find jobs, and we help them learn English as their second language. We look for ways to help the children, because they are our tomorrow.
We took care of 120 families that first month in 2013. After serving more than 15,000 families and hosting over 250 adult English learners, we have accomplished much and built many great relationships. There is still much work to be done as we walk among our neighbors and build our community.