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Christian non-profit organization helps clean homes in Lake Charles

Updated: Sep. 10, 2020 at 5:42 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Hurricane Laura did more than break trees and fences, for some, it broke their spirit. But one organization is looking to bring hope back to those in need. Members with International Disaster Emergency Services or I.D.E.S. are helping Lake Charles locals and members of the South City Christian Church get back to normal.

“A lot of folks have tree damage, whether it’s in the front yard, back yard, or along the house. We’ve just been trying to clean things up,” said I.D.E.S. member Jim Tatum.

For Bay County, Florida, residents Jim and Debbie Tatum, they have previous experience with I.D.E.S. and major storms.

“I.D.E.S. found us,” said Tatum. “They actually stayed in our church in Bayou George after Hurricane Michael. We put them up for six months because there was that much of a need. As soon as the wind stopped blowing, I called them and said let me know when.”

Other members of I.D.E.S. say they want locals to know they aren’t alone. “There are people without hope and they don’t know if anyone is going to come because they don’t know about the disaster,” said I.D.E.S. member Mason Lambert. “Like in Iowa, no one knew about that disaster. So, if we can come in and provide hope for families, we absolutely want to be able to do that.”

For Tatum and his wife, after seeing the love and support from others during Hurricane Michael in 2018, they wanted to provide hope and help in any way they could.

“I think the biggest thing is the isolation,” said Tatum. “The feeling that nobody cares, nobody knows what’s going on. We had so many people flood into our church and let us know that they cared about us and they were there to help us. We felt like it was our turn to pick up and come over here to help them out.”

Officials say I.D.E.S. teams will rotate in and out over the next few weeks or as long as any help is needed.

To get in touch with I.D.E.S. locally, members say to contact the South City Christian Church or call I.D.E.S. at 317-773-4111.

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