Willow, AK – Weekly Report – Aug 10-14, 2020

August 24, 2020

The MDS project in Willow, Alaska was by invitation from the community itself. Volunteers were asked to follow the safety protocols and procedures put in place by MDS to ensure that the communities and people that we serve are protected. As MDS looks to reopen projects, the Benchmarks for Project Startup document will be used to guide the decision making process.

This fourth week of rebuilding homes damaged and destroyed in the devastating 2019 McKinley fire near Willow has been an extremely productive one, with 17 volunteers working tirelessly. It seems like we have almost everyone from different states having traveled to Alaska from California, Arizona, Idaho, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, as well as Chugiak, Alaska to help as many people as possible who have experienced great loss!!

There was a great deal accomplished at 6 different homes with weathering in along with their roofs and insulation.  Many features are being added. Electricity has been added with the blessing of a skilled electrician teaching and mentoring others. So many skilled volunteers have added a great deal to this project through steps and deck building. One of the challenges was installing a 5 x 6’ triple pane window. Teaching and learning and a great willingness provided a wonderful teamwork experience!!

The greatest excitement of the week came as a result of one of our crew leaders being sensitive to the spirit by fasting. As a result of the previous weeks of volunteers working and sharing with a homeowner, Keith, who is going through major health issues, he received Christ as his Savior!! The excitement of this new brother in Christ was evident to all!! He wanted his house blessed so the entire group gathered Thursday at 4:30 for a prayer of blessing as well as healing for Keith!

There’s been a lot of fun and love amongst the volunteers as was shared at the job sites along with the fellowship back at camp whether around meal time, cabins, the fire or going out for sight seeing on down time.