Local church helping thousands of evacuees, opening two new locations

February 07 2021 03:30 pm

CLOVIS, California (KSEE) – Clovis Hills Community Church swiftly turned their lot into a distribution center for evacuees, but it closes Friday at 5 p.m.

This is the first time that Clovis Hills Community Church has done anything like this for evacuees and in their eleven days of service they say thousands of volunteers stepped up, thousands were donated and thousands of people came through.

“Nobody wants a disaster to happen, but when something like this happens, you really see the true hearts of people in the community,” said Michelle Pellerin, the director of operations at Clovis Hills Community Church.

The church opened up their donation distribution center last Monday when the need for help became overwhelming.

“As people were coming down, we wanted to make sure they had everything they needed that they couldn’t run out of the house with,” said Pellerin.

The new distribution centers will be closer to where the evacuees are now–one will be at the Ace Hardware in Prather and the other at Rise Church in Visalia.  

Burrough Valley resident, Genevievre Cowdrey, said she never thought it could happen to her.

“Never thought I’d be evacuated like this before, but it’s really amazing to see how the community’s come together,” Cowdrey said.

“The mountain community, the people that are really strong and they are rallying right now and it’s beautiful to see it and I’m just hoping us down in the Valley.  We flatlanders, would rally with them and really support them as they rebuild,” said Shawn Beaty, the senior pastor at Clovis Hills Community Church.

While the Clovis location is no longer taking donations, the two new locations are taking everything except perishable food.

Rise Church in Visalia is set to open its donation center Sunday, at 7 a.m. While Ace Hardware in Prather is set to open its donation center 11 a.m. on Monday. Officials ask to call ahead to confirm times.

The Red Cross is assisting those impacted by the California Wildfires.  You can help. Click this link to donate online:  https://www.redcross.org/donate/cm/ksee24-pub.html/

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