Lumberton educators help rebuild community devastated by Hurricane Matthew

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The community got a check from Lowe's for $50,000 (WTVD)

"Good Morning America" was live in Robeson County Thursday morning to focus on one community's ongoing journey towards recovery following Hurricane Matthew.

In Lumberton, some residents are still reeling from the devastating impact of the storm after three-fourths of the city was underwater.

About 1,000 homes were destroyed and around 1,500 people were stranded when water from the Lumber River inundated part of the area.

RELATED: Pictures from Chopper 11 show severe Lumberton flooding

After flooding damaged West Lumberton Elementary School, Principal Tara Bullard and Angela Faulkner, the principal of Lumberton Junior High School, decided to combine their schools and create a safe environment for more than 650 students to continue their education.

"One thing we wanted to do was just try to bring them back to a sense of normalcy," Faulkner said.

On Thursday, "GMA" honored Bullard, Faulkner and two counselors from each school - Vicki McGuirt and Felicia Hunt - who rose to the occasion in the aftermath of the devastation, working tirelessly to comfort the kids - even finding out what each student needed and soliciting donations.

Many in the community told "GMA" that the four educators went above and beyond during this difficult time to inspire, lead and provide hope to the children.


To honor the four women's work, Disney, the parent company of ABC11 and ABC News' "Good Morning America," donated a playground for Lumberton's recreational activity center after the previous one was badly damaged by flood waters.
Rob Marciano was live at Lumberton Junior High School when Lowes Home Improvement presented the women with a $50,000 check as part of the "We are GMA" campaign.

"I feel humbled and I feel very blessed," Bullard said. "Just completely unexpected and completely amazing that we would receive something like this for our community."

"I think it's going to be fun and I'm going to be so happy we got a new playground," West Lumberton Elementary student Khloe Demery said.

The city still has a way to go to rebuild. Over 350 families in the county are living in temporary housing, according to FEMA, and thousands are reliant on FEMA assistance.

If you would like to help, take part in "GMA's" Donate a Dollar which goes to the Second Harvest Food Bank that services Lumberton.

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The community got a check from Lowe's for $50,000

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