Polaris vehicles provide hope for “forgotten” after hurricane
Naples, Fla. – When you are used to being the last one to have your critical needs evaluated after a major storm, the last one to have your power restored after an outage, and the last one to be asked ‘how are you doing’ after a tragedy, you grow used to being forgotten. In fact, being forgotten is your ‘normal.’ So, when you hear the sound of a utility terrain vehicles (UTV) making its way down your narrow street, which is partially hidden by tree branches and lined with deep holes, you are surprised – very surprised.
“I could not believe my ears,” said Bob. “We are used to taking care of ourselves in our neighborhood because no one else seems to care. We are the ‘forgotten’ ones. When I heard the vehicle and saw The Salvation Army loaded down with supplies, I was stunned – pleasantly stunned.”
On the UTV, donated by Polaris Industries, was Captain Ricky Perez, the Corps Officer for The Salvation Army in Naples. “We were canvasing the neighborhoods looking for people to help,” shared Perez. “These vehicles allow us to get into places that our larger vehicles cannot access. We wanted to reach those that are usually unreachable.”
Captain Perez was able to provide Bob, as well as his neighbors, with MREs, water and a promise he would send hot food later. Bob did not believe him. After all, his neighborhood is always forgotten.
Of course, Captain Perez did not forget. He ensured a small mobile food service unit made its way to Bob and his neighbors, and he has checked on him every day. Bob is overjoyed. “Our homes may be raggedy but we are people, too,” explained Bob. “I thank The Salvation Army for truly seeing ‘me,’ not my circumstance.”
Indeed, The Salvation Army sees Bob, along with the thousands of individuals The Salvation Army has had the privilege to serve and will continue to serve during their Hurricane Irma response and relief effort. No one is ever forgotten.
The recovery and clean up effort is expected to be costly and go on for years. The best way to help is by making a financial donation.
- Give online at helpsalvationarmy.org or by texting STORM to 51555
- Donate by phone: 1-800-SAL-ARMY
- Mail checks to: The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 1959, Atlanta, GA 30301. Please designate “Hurricane 2017” on all checks.