This week I took a break from my usual projects at HOPE Village and spent some time working on a new, more pressing issue; the recent flooding in the HOPE Village (and all around the city of Detroit). I spent hours looking at all of the reports that were filed to the city in our district, as well as going over the reports that were filed to my organization. I then put each address that reported flooding on a map, so that we could see which streets in our neighborhood were hit the hardest/if there were any trends.
Some of the photos and requests from the residents were heartbreaking. Photos of flooded basements filled with people’s possessions, family items, and more all sitting in 3-5 feet of water. A few of the reports were captioned with just one word, “Help.”
I have done community work before, albeit different from HOPE Village, and I have felt the feeling, “I wish I could do more to help.” Oftentimes, that is simply not possible; I can’t go clean out sewage water from the basements of dozens of residents. It is important, however, to focus on what I can do or to ask my mentors what they think would be most helpful.