CEDAR RAPIDS MISSION: Students from The Crossing go to help

Thursday, July 3, 2008 | 8:16 p.m. CDT; updated 1:56 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Marty Swant

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — In response to the massive damage from recent flooding in Iowa, a group of college students from The Crossing, including myself, organized a mission trip to Cedar Rapids from Thursday through Sunday to help with relief efforts. Some people in our group have family there, and others know no one. Yet, we all share the common desire to help people in desperate need.

The trip was organized in a little less than two weeks, and final details are still coming together as the first carloads of students arrive in the city. We will sleep in a former car dealership owned by a student’s mother. Area families have offered to provide us with meals during our time in Cedar Rapids. We have not received our exact work assignments yet, but we do know they will include gutting the interiors of flooded homes and bleaching mold from walls.

The only other time I’ve helped in a flooded area was when I traveled to New Orleans with 16 students to assist with ongoing relief in the area in March 2007, months after Hurricane Katrina ravaged the city. We gutted houses, cleaned alleys full of trash and helped restore a church.

None of us knows how the situation in Iowa might be similar or different, but we are ready to help the people of Cedar Rapids for the next four days in whatever ways we can. I’ll be filing daily dispatches from the field. So check the print Missourian and go to for the latest news.

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