Most Edgecumbe residents without insurance - Volunteer

By Mere McLean

Over 100 volunteers are helping to clean up the Edgecumbe community following Cyclone Cook's aftermath. But as the water clears, one resident reveals her concerns. 

Local resident Haromi Dodds told Te Kāea, “You have to get in there and do the work, row the boat, support one another and work together. That's the great thing about Edgecumbe.”

Members of the Ngāti Awa Volunteers Army group are lending a hand.  Amidst the group is Lorraine Hale with a stern message to the local governing bodies.

“Look at the flood banks near your town, make sure they are sitting right and that the concrete is secure. Here that did not happen, the concrete wasn't secured properly and reinforced.”

Whakatāne Mayor Tony Bonne has guaranteed that a full inquiry into the flooding will take place.  1600 people were displaced due to the floods.  Now families have to pick up where they left off. 

Hale says, “The majority of the families are youth or elderly facing high costs. The majority of the families we're helping don't have insurance so they're finding what hasn't been damaged and using that.”

This group of workers will be here for the next three days but by the end of today, it will indeed be a day of hard work.