WAYNESVILLE— Hard-working volunteers and property owners cleaning up flood-damaged facilities around Waynesville have not had to worry about their mid-day meal this week thanks to the American Red Cross.
A four-member Red Cross volunteer logistics team based in Rolla is spending part of their days this week packing the chapter's Suburban with donated lunch items and distributing them to people cleaning up in Waynesville.
"I think things have been going very well," said Donna Zeilmann, the Red Cross logistics chief overseeing the mobile feeding operation. "The people have been very generous here. Those that we've served have been extremely appreciative. That always makes things a lot easier on us when you know that people really appreciate what you're doing."
The Red Cross has not had to buy food this week due to generous donations from the St. Robert/Waynesville area, but that will change this weekend.
Red Cross volunteers will expand their mobile feeding operation Saturday and Sunday to include parts of Maries and Phelps counties along with areas in Pulaski County.
Zeilmann anticipates the Red Cross will have to buy lunch items for the weekend because of the increased number of people coming in to assist.
"It will be a much larger group," Zeilmann said. "A lot of people are coming in to help clean - to help friends and family. There will be a lot of owners of seasonal homes that will be there. Most of them have their houses gutted. They've been left to dry all week. They are about ready to put their drywall back in."
Zeilmann is bringing in two Red Cross emergency response vehicles (ERVs) and four more volunteers to help with the weekend's increased lunch-time workload.
ERV teams also will have some shovels, bug spray, paper towels, gloves and hand sanitizer to distribute.
Sunday is the last day the Red Cross will provide lunch in the area.
Even though Red Cross volunteers are leaving the area, people impacted by the flood can still call the Red Cross at 866-815-2738 for assistance.