Sunday, January 16, 2011
Salvation Saturday and Sister Suburb Sunday!!
This blog, and the pictures in it, give me great pride in my fellow Queenslanders and Australians. I wasn’t going to write more on the floods here – but the world needs to know – that we are already bouncing back – “the weather may break our hearts but it will never break our spirit!!”
On Salvation Saturday – the Saturday after the floods in Brisbane – the Council asked for people to help clean up.
They were over-whelmed by the response – estimates range from 35,000 to 60,000 people turned up to registration points – and were briefed on what they were to do and what to take care of, and where they were being sent, then were bussed out to all the areas that had been flooded. They worked in 2 shifts, morning and afternoon.
From the air it looked likes swarms of ants descending on the city
They were supposed to register and show photo ID – as a form of control as they were going into strangers houses, businesses and private property to clean up, however twice the number that registered also turned up to help!!
They stripped houses of spoiled things, hosed off things they could save, cleaned sporting areas, child care centres, schools, pressure hosed rooves, scraped mud off roads, cleaned out businesses and others even turned up with bob-cats and back end loaders to help
There were lines of trucks taking rubbish away – and all this was freely donated, the time, the equipment they used, the vehicles – everything!!
They were even showing Queensland pride – or maybe defiance!!.
As well a lot of tradesmen turned up to help, donating time and expertise, – builders, electricians, plumbers etc – all going round assessing houses to see the damage and where the owner needed to start on repairs.
Help came, and is coming from local to great distances away – I just heard of some wonderful people coming from South Australia to help – and a few have even flown in from overseas.
The volunteers were asked to bring their own buckets, and cleaning things, water (to drink) and a snack. They were told to wear rubber boots or strong closed shoes, long trousers and a long sleeved shirt and to wear gloves!!
They found rubbish everywhere – a safe on top of a pergola roof, and all sorts of things in washing lines!!
Even frogs that had got washed up were rescued
Everyone who can is helping in one way or another – some are even cooking BBQ sausages for the workers, some are feeding (literally) the workers so their dirty hands don’t come in contact with the food,
4X, the local beer company, took a pantechnicon (huge truck) full of beer round the suburbs and gave out free beer to helpers, Thankfully for Queenslanders who are quite fond of their beer, the brew house escaped flooding and most of their stock was kept away from the brewery so was OK. The main buildings, though, were several meters under water!!
The same happened on Sunday as well as Saturday and will continue all week at least until the work is done!!
It is strangers helping strangers, all pulling together to get the city cleaned up and working again!! And its giving hope to the people who were so badly affected and had almost given up!! Its putting smiles on people’s faces and creating friendship that will last a lifetime!! But most of all – its Magic!!
Photos from the local Brisbane Paper