Next month, I am taking a group of homeschoolers back to Joplin for a week to help IDES with rebuilding Joplin after the May 2011 tornado. Most of the group have already been, but we are adding some new members to our team.
Last trip, we hand cleared a parking lot of rubble which at one time were part of a church, cleaned up a yard, did some painting, spread gravel, pulled yucca plants, moved wood and rocks, burned a brush pile, and built a storage shed.
Our duties for this trip have not yet been determined, but I am sure Rick and Joe will have plenty to keep us busy. We could be painting, sheet rocking, or doing other inside work, or weather depending, possibly doing some outside construction work, landscaping or construction. No matter what job they give us, these kids jump in willingly and do it.
We will again be staying at Westside Christian Church in Joplin. They host all the IDES teams that come down.
The kids learn a lot, not only about disasters, or construction (hey, we had girly girls using the nail guns like pro's by Saturday morning last trip), getting along with others when it is 115 degrees outside and the deodorant has quit and you are sleeping 6 to a room, doing your own cooking and laundry, but also about people--how God takes care of his people and how they pull together after something like this happens. We talked to several residents who "rode out the storm" and listened to and read about their stories of how they, when hurt themselves, went to help someone else or dig in rubble for a neighbor.
Our last trip was sponsored by Mission Lake Christian Camp--kids, staff and parents gave and gave and gave and generously sponsored our trip 100%, with money left over to give to IDES and for us to buy some tools that we left behind for future teams to use.
This trip however, we will be paying out own way, which is basically buying food and fuel for our vehicles.
We will also be taking down any tools or Lowe's gift cards that anyone cares to donate to IDES Joplin project.
For information on donating tools or if you care to donate gas, grocery, restaurant or Walmart cards to either our group or IDES let me know and I can give you information on how to get it to either us or IDES directly.