The Hurricane Knights helped the Port Orange households before and after the storm.
The Knights of Columbus Council 8086 made waiting for Hurricane Dorian a lot easier, as they assisted 50 households in the Port Orange area with their storm preparations.
This came after recently adapting their Faith in Action initiative where hurricane preparedness is one of the components. The Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church-based Council embraced the opportunity by holding a free hurricane seminar where participants learned many of the facets of dealing with storms. Topics included preparation, insurance, developing a disaster plan, evacuations, emergency contacts, pets and boats, according to a press release.
At the seminar, parishioners and local residents were given the opportunity to sign up to request assistance. Council 8086 formed four “Hurricane Knights” teams, led by Sir Knight Dr. Ernest Jackson, to survey all of the respondents.
When Dorian was officially named a hurricane, the teams swung into action, visiting 50 homes to assist with storm preparation. This included hanging plywood, moving outdoor furniture and limb cutting. At the time, it was a 180 mph Category 5 hurricane headed straight to Florida. Fortunately, the path of the storm changed which resulted in minimal impact.
Once the storm passed, the Hurricane Knights revisited the 50 homes and helped take down shutters and removed any debris.
“We had a Hurricane Preparedness seminar several months ago with excellent attendance – 100-plus – from our parish as well as other interested parties from the community,” said Jim Waggoner, Grand Knight of Council 8086. “Many of our parishioners are elderly and/or disabled and need assistance in hurricane preparedness. We had a sign-up sheet at the seminar for those needing assistance, and many signed from the community.
As fate would have it, the Brothers of Council 8086 we were called to action with Hurricane Dorian and were able to assist at least 50 families with preparation. We were able to mobilize at least 15-20 Knights and place plywood and/or steel shutters on community homes where assistance was requested.”
Council 8086 Community Director, SK Dr. Ernie Jackson, provided both the motivation and the point of contact for both the seminar and Hurricane Knights, working under Waggoner and Program Director SK Tim Mell.