Mayor Bozeman: Hurricane Florence impacts people & lives, but also brings community together
Sept. 20, 2018 — by Leland Mayor Brenda Bozeman
This morning while working at the Brunswick Family Assistance distribution site, I had the opportunity to speak with a number of people whose lives have been turned upside down by Hurricane Florence. Some remain without power and have little to no food remaining at their homes, some cannot return to work and are missing paychecks, and some have lost their homes entirely.
While many of the neighborhoods in Leland fared very well in the storm, others have been completely devastated. As we begin recovery, it is important that those who fared well remember how truly lucky they are.
The recovery from Florence will take months; not days or weeks. Loved ones will return to the area, roads will be cleared, utilities will be restored, stores will reopen and we will begin to get back to some sense of normalcy; but some things will take time.
There are hundreds of thousands of tons of debris in Leland and Brunswick County that will have to be removed; there are houses that will have to be repaired; there are streets and bridges that will have to be inspected to ensure they are safe. All these things take time and I ask for your patience in this process.
If there is any good that has come from Hurricane Florence, it has been seeing our community come together as one to tackle this storm. People throughout northern Brunswick County, the state of North Carolina and around the nation are committed to rebuilding our communities.
It is this sense of togetherness that will make us stronger in the long run. I urge you to be part of this. There are a number of ways you can help by volunteering in the community. I encourage you to contact Brunswick Family Assistance at 910-754-4766 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how you can help.
I also encourage you to be alert and aware of potential scams and unscrupulous contractors. We have gotten reports of a number of people from out of the area and even from out of state descending upon Leland to take advantage of our citizens. Please be wary of anyone going door to door and remember to contact your insurance company before hiring anyone to do work on your home. If you do suspect a scammer in Leland or Brunswick County, please report it to 911, (910) 253-2777, or (910) 253-5383.
Finally, I want to encourage you to regularly check the News section of the Town of Leland website and Leland social media feeds for official communications from the Town. Unfortunately the rumor mill kicks into high gear during emergency and recovery situations, but official Town communications – along with official Brunswick County communications – are the best place to get the facts.
I truly wish you and your families the best as we move into recovery.
Florence hit us hard, but we are a strong community and we will persevere.