ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – The Salvation Army delivered donations to Orange County hurricane victims Friday, just days after a donation drive with News 6 collected more than 100,000 items.
Judith Montedeoca is one of many people living in Cypress Landing Apartments whose homes were flooded during Hurricane Ian. Coupled with her health conditions, it’s been a tough road to recovery.
“I’m a cancer patient, pelvis and colon. I’m a COPD patient,” Montedeoca said. “I’ve never been through this. We lost so much.”
After the storm, the complex was littered with sofas, mattresses and ruined furniture. Many lost everything.
That’s when News 6 teamed up with the Salvation Army to help with a donation drive.
“News 6 gets results with everything you do and then when you partner with us it’s even bigger,” Captain Ken Chapman, Area Commander with the Salvation Army said.
News 6 viewers donated more than 100,000 items from household products to toiletries.
Friday the items were packed up and hand-delivered to people at Cypress Landing who were grateful to get them.
People like Jean Alize.
“We needed basically everything as far as water, food and stuff like this,” Alize said.
Other non-profits joined in with shoes, clothes and food.
Chapman said it was an honor to serve those in his own backyard.
“To be able to help people in Cypress Landing who really were suffering, they were so grateful,” Chapman said.
Like so many Central Florida communities, the people at Cypress Landing have been through a lot. More than 200 families who lived on the first floor were told they would have to leave by the end of the month.
Orange County District 3 Commissioner Mayra Uribe has been working with the complex’s management on behalf of the residents.
“All of these folks had paid for rent for October, so it’s giving them a refund for October, giving them their deposit back if they’re willing to leave, but also giving the option to go to the second floor if they want to and first right to return when they fix it,” Uribe said.
Montedeoca said the donations from strangers were a godsend.
“Oh gosh, it’s beautiful. God is with us,” she said.
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