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Thousands of dollars available for those still suffering from hurricane damage

Published: May. 4, 2021 at 5:22 PM EDT
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JONES COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - It’s been almost three years since Hurricane Florence devastated Eastern North Carolina.

But the emotional toll it has taken on people affected never leaves.

Many people lose everything when storms come through.

Some families, like Dawn Robinson’s, often go through these losses more than once.

She spent $150,000 and had to rebuild two homes from damage from two different storms. In 1999, her house was under water for days after Hurricane Floyd, then nearly 20 years later Hurricane Florence came and took her home from her again.

Robinson moved on to higher ground but left behind an empty lot that used to be filled with generations worth of family memories. A painful reminder of everything she’s lost.

“Starting over is never easy, but standing in my front what used to be my front yard used to bring me sadness, now I’m okay with it. I am I’m very blessed and thankful that my family and I are in a nice safe home. And I just miss this because this was here for so long,” said Robinson.

But, perhaps most poignant to her, she left behind two trees, planted as a memorial to her mother, Verna, who died in 2000.

“Seeing how much they’ve grown. It’s heartbreaking,” said Robinson. “Because I wish I could dig them up and take them to my new home. Just to say I could have a piece of my mom on my new land.”

But there could be help to recovery, even years later.

Stephanie Cox is a program director at Coastal Community Action, where more than $700,000 is available for people still trying to recover from past hurricane damages.

Cox said, “We still have some families who are displaced, who may still be living out of hotels, who may still be living with families.”

If you still need assistance, you may qualify for the remaining funds.

You can visit coastalca.org to learn more about hurricane damage assistance funding.

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