The Salvation Army Helping as Leominster Flood Clean-up and Long-term Recovery Begin
Area Braces for More Rain
Leominster, MA (September 12, 2023) —Flash floods left the City of Leominster in a State of Emergency on Monday night. The Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) team was on scene first thing Tuesday morning with their extensive network of trained disaster volunteers from nearby Fitchburg. They are always ready to respond and were in the Leominster community providing clean-up kits, food, and social services.
“I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Envoy Lynnette Valentine-Warren, The Salvation Army of Fitchburg. “Our phones started ringing off the hook as soon as people were forced to evacuate their flooded homes and they needed to seek assistance.”
The Salvation Army is delivering hundreds of meals to older adults at the Leominster Housing Authority who were left without power. Additionally, EDS volunteers are providing clean-up support, personal hygiene kits, and emotional and spiritual care to survivors and first responders. Since heavy rains hit this week, EDS disaster teams from across Massachusetts and Southern New England have been on standby while volunteers are on the ground serving.
Heavy rain caused catastrophic flooding throughout parts of Montachusett County, closing and washing out roads as flood survivors were instructed to evacuate amid concerns about flooding and two dams in the area that were in danger of a breach. In Leominster, buildings were flooded and damaged, people were in emergency shelters, and schools were closed. Some areas of the city received close to 10 inches of rain during the storm, causing flash flooding. As residents recover from the damage, they are also bracing for more rain that is expected to hit the area later this week.
Emily Mew, EDS Director for The Salvation Army’s Massachusetts Division, highlighted the significance of the response saying, “We’re doing everything we can to assess the long-term recovery goals of this community as we work alongside our emergency management partners to get resources and support to those impacted as quickly as possible. We’ve already provided hundreds of meals, and our work is just getting started.”
The Salvation Army is uniquely positioned to mobilize and serve communities before, during, and after a natural disaster strikes. The Salvation Army, with the continued generosity of the public, will remain on the frontlines of this disaster, serving those affected by recent flooding in Massachusetts and Vermont, for as long we are needed.
To make a financial gift to support The Salvation Army’s Flood Relief efforts:
• Donate online: www.HelpSalvationArmy.org
• Donate by phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY (1-800-725-2769)
For more information on The Salvation Army’s response, visit www.disaster.salvationarmyusa.org. For National Preparedness Month updates this September, follow us on social media @SalvationArmyMA.