The aftermath of Hurricane Florence continues to take its toll on hard-hit New Bern, North Carolina.
Pastor James McIver of Without Limits Christian Center tells CBN, "We say, 'Okay, we've been through storms before, no problem.' But we did not realize it was going to have the impact that it had."
With most people still in shelters or unable to return to their flooded homes, Operation Blessing has teamed up with Without Limits Christian Center to meet the community's most immediate needs.
Operation Blessing's Director of US Disaster Relief Dan Moore says, "We've been able to bring in a 26-foot box truck and then now we've been able to bring in our tractor trailer truck full of emergency relief supplies like hygiene kits, water, Home Depot flood buckets."
Pastor McIver says, "As a church we're always going to do whatever we can, but in a disaster like this we don't have enough resources to do it ourselves so we prayed that God would raise up somebody to help and then next thing I know you guys are bringing trucks and bringing supplies. In just a few days we have been able to help so many people."
Pearlie is just one of hundreds of people Operation Blessing has helped so far.
"I got toothpaste, toothbrush, q-tips, cleaning stuff, water—you know stuff I didn't have, cuz I lost everything so I didn't have nothing so finding out that this is here.. it's been a blessing for me because I really do need it…Me and my mom," she says.
With the power still out in much of New Bern, Operation Blessing is now also helping to provide hot meals for the community, and those hot meals make a big difference in more ways than one.
"We've had people inbox us, email us and tell us we haven't had a hot meal in two days, or three days, or four days," Pastor McIver says. "After a while, it kind of wears on you. So for them to be able to come get a hot meal, even get the supplies that you guys have given, it really kind of gives them a sense of strength, a sense of joy, and kind of really reignites their faith to say okay I got to stay in the fight I just got to keep going, I'm going to get through this."
Florence survivor Kathryn is the perfect example of that. "I'm crying for joy to have something warm to eat," she said.
That's why Pastor McIver wants CBN partners to know something. "I'm here to tell every partner that your money is going into the right places. You found an organization that has integrity, that's going to do the right thing. Keep supporting them because they're out there boots on the ground making it happen," he explains.
One elderly lady told CBN, "It makes you realize that people love each other."
Pearlie agrees. "You have people that really, really care…and that's what we need here… we need people like you to care," she says.