Volunteers make relief bags for tornado victims Saturday

LAFOLLETTE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Volunteers had a monstrous job ahead of them Saturday morning, sorting out a mountain of donations.

Pastor Keith Hampson, of Well Springs United Methodist Church, says they're happy to have such a big task.

"We're gonna try to get as much out to people who are in need in the community as we can. We're gonna make sure every item is distributed to folks who are in need right now," he says.

Boxes of canned food, bottled water, and hygiene items were all put into relief bags to give to folks hit by at least one tornado last Sunday.

Church groups from all over Claiborne and Campbell Counties gathered at Well Springs to help.

"It does give us a sense of community. Whether you know them or not, they are without, and you are with," Chris Stanfield, from LaFollette United Methodist Church, explains.

Meanwhile, donations kept showing up.

"You get that feeling you want to help somebody that needs the help, we try to help," says Rex Hale, who showed up with palettes of water.

Hampson says he plans to keep the church open all day, so anyone can stop in and say some prayers.

"It's been a wonderful effort that's been multi-cultural, multi-denominational. It's just been a good thing for all of us," Hampson says.

Well Springs has been feeding more than 200 people every day, everyone from volunteers to people who lost everything in the storm.

"You feel for the folks. What they're going through and stuff like that. So you want to try and be a help," American Red Cross worker Kathy Clark says.

Others say that's just what East Tennesseans do, help out.

"They're good people. That's all I can say. They're good people," Danny Irvin explains.

The church started giving out relief bags late Saturday afternoon. They plan to continue Sunday morning. They also plan to deliver bags to people who can't get out and about.


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