Sunsets around here are beautiful.
Yes, the teams are coming back. I spoke with two more today. It seems everyone wants February but it is now full. And the midwest is making a good showing, Illinois, Indiana (2 teams), and Wisconsin. Thanks to all of you. We look forward to meeting and working with all of you.
Some more great news! Diane is coming back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes, her church realized where her heart is and she will be returning in a couple of weeks. We are so excited! Diane adds so much to this entire relief effort; the relationships she develops with the homeowners and also with the teams is unmatched! Not to mention that I have missed her something terrible! Having a fellow female here is such a blessing! Please keep her in your prayers as she will be driving (alone) all the way from Wisconsin -- in January!!
After spending nearly all of the past 2 days on the phone with incoming teams and answering their questions I thought I would try and tell you about "things" here, in case you are already coming with a team or thinking about it. Hopefully this might answer some things for you.
First, you stay right here inside the church in rooms set aside for Convoy of Hope volunteers. The church is completely done, carpeted floors and bathroom facilities. There is a room for men and one for women. If you come as a couple ... you won't be that week! :)
Next, there are no cooking facilities on site. There is a refrigerator in the back area where we work. Most teams make their own breakfasts with cereal or breakfast bars each morning. There is a McDonald's within walking distance. While eating breakfast they are also busy making sandwiches for lunch. It's much easier to do this and eat at the site than try and go to a fast food place. "Fast" here means more than an hour! Alot of people working in the area and a shortage of employees!
The only time schedule is each morning at 8AM with devotions. From there we take the teams to their prospective jobsites. They know ahead of time what needs to be done and get started right away. Monty and I are on and off the sites throughout the day. We are never farther than a phone call away. The teams work for as long as they wish. There is no work time schedule, only the one they make for themselves.
When they leave for the site each morning they also take their shower items with them and a change of clothes. The shower facilities are at the community college directly across the street from the church. They have been kind enough to open the aquatic center for all of our volunteers. The women's showers offer the stall type and the open concept. The men's is only the open concept.
After working and showering the teams head out for their evening dinner. Most all places are open and you can spend as little or as much as you have budgeted for yourself. No change of clothing is needed as everyone!!!! down here has been working. Even if you decide to skip the shower and go straight to dinner you are dressed fine.
After dinner they usually return to the church ready for some team fellowship time. And then you have those who are ready to do nothing except head to their beds. Speaking of that, it is necessary to bring a sleeping back or air mattress to sleep on. And don't forget your pillow!
Hopefully this has explained some things for you and answered any questions you might have about how things work down here. It's all alot of fun -- yes, fun! Whenever we are working for the Lord He expects us to be filled with joy!
We thank all of you who have already been here and also those who are scheduled. If you are thinking about coming please notify us asap!!! This entire relief effort rests soley in the hands of God and the volunteers! For any more info you can email our Convoy leaders who take care of all the scheduling at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Until tomorrow .... Susan and Monty