NOTTOWAY, Va (WRIC) – Last week’s devastating ice storms left thousands of residents in Central Virginia without power.
With around 14,000 Southside Electric customers going into their eighth or ninth day without power as of Sunday afternoon, residents are stepping up to help each other out.
“We’ve got a serious clean up ahead of us,” said Nottoway district two supervisor John Roark.
People from all over the state: Northern Virginia, Spotsylvania, Prince William County and other areas have come together to bring supplies to the Blackstone Police Department to give away to those in need.
In two days alone, they’ve given supplies to over 150 families who’ve stopped by and hand-delivered supplies to around 20 families.
This effort is in addition to emergency meals being given to families at Blackstone, Crewe and Burkeville fire departments.
Caylee Goad of Nottoway started the effort after recognizing the need for propane, blankets, food and water in the area following the ice storms. She’s asking for donations via CashApp and PayPal to get the supplies.
Holding back tears, Roark felt the need to get involved. He said you can see how thankful these families are by just looking at their faces.
“The look on their faces is… I’m sorry, I’m trying to get through it. They’re so grateful for these guys and the work they’ve done. They’ve been very appreciative of everyone’s efforts here,” said Roark.
Nottoway resident Belinda Henry has been without power for nine days and said she’s thankful someone in the area told her about the supplies giveaway.
“I’ve been freezing myself in the house staying there. Once I’m covered up, I’m fine, but once I take that cover off it’s terrible,” Henry said.
Roark is calling on government officials, asking why the state isn’t sending in things like propane or water. He said he hasn’t seen a disaster this devastating in decades.
He said local governments like Nottoway, have been doing everything they can, including the emergency meal giveaway at three fire departments.
“We could’ve called a state of emergency much sooner when the governor did it and we were behind the 8-ball getting the shelters open,” Roark said on the county’s response.
Roark said it’s just citizens helping citizens.
“If the citizens can do that, the representatives and elected officials have zero excuses,” Roark told 8News.
The group plans to hold the same donation again Monday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Crewe Fire Department.