Fayetteville mountain climber scales to new heights to help earthquake victims

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Donna Decker-McCollum is back on North Carolina soil with a new perspective on love and life.

Weeks ago, the experienced climber from Fayetteville set off on a mountain mission of a different kind.

"For those of you who think you have nothing, we have everything," Decker-McCollum said.

She's been helping families who survived the earthquake in Nepal, armed with supplies for children, water purification kits, and food. She and the other volunteers delivered a lot more than just basic necessities, though.

"That's not what made these people happy, it was seeing us," she said. "Bringing us brought hope and prayer."

She volunteered with the Christian Broadcast Network's India Disaster relief team. They drove 14 hours just to get to one isolated village that had not seen any outside help.

A CBN news team traveled with the volunteers as they delivered bags of rice, tarps for tents, and coloring books for the children.

"They didn't just sit there and color and walk away, they colored for hours on end, because it took away from what they have to deal with right now."

Tonight her prayers are with the people she left behind. Many are living in roadside tents because their villages were reduced to rubble. Many, she said, are scared to go back to their crumbled homes.

"They don't complain. They pray a lot," she said. "They're very grateful for what we've done for them. You don't hear them asking for more and they know they need more."

Now volunteers there worry that a hopeless situation will get worse with the start of the monsoon season just a couple of weeks away,

Donna has climbed Mt. Everest, and Kilimanjaro, but says reaching out to help bring some hope in amid despair was one of the greatest highs she's experienced.

"I have the ability to go home to a beautiful family, a beautiful home that's intact," said Decker-McCollum, expressing her gratitude. "Be good to the people around you. Be kind the people around you. Give to a total stranger."

Decker says $10 dollars buys a bag of rice that will feed a family in Nepal for one month. She ask that we make a donation on the CBN webpage here or to the International Red Cross.

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