SWFL Salvation Army volunteers head to Louisiana for hurricane relief

Local volunteers with the Salvation Army are packing up to head to Louisiana, where they will aid ongoing hurricane relief efforts. WINK News anchor Lindsey Sablan met them two days before their trip.

There are smiles to be seen in Louisiana amid so much devastation, thanks in part to a massive response to the state’s struggles: 140 Salvation Army volunteers have set up in the state hit by Category 4 Hurricane Ida.

Pablo Llanes is one of them, headed to Louisiana to relieve the volunteers who have been there since Aug. 30.

“I’m a born Floridian, so I’ve been through plenty of hurricanes myself, so I just want to give a helping hand to those who need it,” Llanes said.

Capt. Ben Bridges says the teams have handed out 233,000 meals in 10 days, a huge help for families who lost entire homes to Ida and still don’t have power.

“We have our mobile canteens, which are essentially our field kitchen, a food truck… we can pump out 15 hundred meals a day,” Bridges said. “Right after Irma, we had teams of 100 at our compound that were going all throughout the county.. we want to give back.”

Volunteers have also handed out 4,000 hygiene kits since they arrived. Providing food, water and a message: “Hope is on the way.”

Reporter:Lindsey Sablan
Writer:Joey Pellegrino
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