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    West Virginia Flooding

    August 5 2016. Written by Cynthia Mankamyer, Garrett County Unit Administrator.
    In late June, the state of West Virginia was struck with some of the deadliest flooding ever seen. The state received help from organizations such as the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. Although help from the Maryland Responds MRC was not requested, that did not stop one of our volunteers from going to volunteer their time to help the citizens of West Virginia.
    Garrett County Health Department’s Maryland Responds Unit Administrator, Cindy Mankamyer, RN spent Saturday, July 4th helping flood victims in Clendenin, WV, a small town about 3 hours south of Garrett County, Maryland. The whole town was virtually under water as the Elk River spilled over its banks on June 23rd. Cindy connected with a local teacher via Facebook after reading heart-wrenching posts from people requesting help. Even before the formal channels for sending volunteers could be initiated, this young Clendenin resident set up an improvised volunteer dispatch center and began sending out teams to addresses in her town and neighboring towns where help was urgently needed. She was simultaneously organizing incoming supplies such as water, bleach, buckets, shovels, masks, boots, gloves, etc. On that Saturday alone, she outfitted and sent out nearly 500 volunteers using only her cell phone, a notebook, and some hard-working friends and relatives to assist. This was a great example of a spontaneous local disaster response and the constructive use of social media.