Sampson always ready to respond to needs

When there is a need, Sampson County residents are quick to respond. That is especially true in times of natural disasters, like the most recent hurricanes that have ravaged parts of our country and beyond.

One of the main reasons is because our citizens have big hearts and they open wide to those who cannot help themselves. The other is because many residents here understand the problems that hurricanes cause and want to return some of that which has been given to us during past storms.

So it is no wonder that Clinton Community Church and dozens of other businesses and organizations across the county are finding ways to respond to the dire situations left in the wake of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, both which have left millions of people unsure where their next meal is coming from or when they will be able to return to what is left of their homes.

Goodness shines through the darkest of clouds, and we are seeing it yet again as the recovery process begins for people in Florida, Texas and beyond.

Just this week we’ve heard that Ecno and Campbell oil companies each sent a tractor-trailer load of gasoline to assist hurricane victims; Smithfield Foods is donating gas for truck drivers; and several churches are planning, or currently staging, relief efforts of their own.

The Sampson Independent is in talks this week with the North Carolina Baptist Men’s Association to partner with that group to assist in its multi-faceted relief efforts in both Florida and Texas, as well as other areas hardest hit by the two storms. Keep watching the local paper for more about those efforts and how you can take part.

And we reported in Tuesday’s edition about Clinton Community Church’s relief effort, one that is focused on collecting canned food and non-perishable food items to help the thousands of Floridains displaced because of Irma’s wrath.

A semi truck is easily seen in the church’s parking lot, waiting to be loaded with the items the church’s members are working to collect with the help of the community.

Those items will be taken to Florida and used in feeding kitchens to provide sustenance for both hurricane victims and the thousands of volunteers manning shelters, providing air and water rescues, working in the kitchens and assisting law enforcement and other emergency personnel.

The church is accepting donations from noon until 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Saturdays for anyone who would like to assist in this relief effort.

With ways to help increasing every day within our own community, residents will have choices on what avenue they take to assist. We are thankful for those choices and for all those who, by virtue of their big hearts, have made it possible.

The wrath hurricanes Harvey and Irma brought to Texas, Florida, Barbuda, Cuba and other areas could just have easily been directed at us here in North Carolina. Knowing that not only makes us feel blessed, it should give us pause followed by a move to action.

By the looks of what is going on in our midst, that is exactly what is happening, another reason we are so proud to call Sampson home.