A year after Matthew, Fayetteville Salvation Army prepares to reopen shelter

FAYETTEVILLE, North Carolina (WTVD) -- It's been one year since Hurricane Matthew slammed North Carolina.

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Thirty-one people died, and more than 98,000 homes were damaged, many by the intense flooding in the days after the storm. More than 600 roads were washed out. Neighborhoods in Edgecombe County were underwater.

In the end, Matthew caused more than $4.8 billion in damage.

Today, many people displaced by that storm are still out of their homes. Residents aren't the only ones still struggling. Local businesses and non-profits were forced to pick up the pieces alongside those they serve.

"There's just different types of assistance. And that's just going to take time," said Capt. Matthew Tranthem with the Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army knows the difficulties of the recovery process. Its shelter took on several inches of water during the storm, leaving many seeking refuge in the days after with nowhere to go.

"It's caused a great burden on our community. We've not been able to house many women and families that otherwise would've turned to us, and we've got a lot to a lot of work to do to get our shelter back open," said Tranthem.

After months of construction, the shelter is nearing completion. The Salvation Army will come back better and stronger as it takes on the homelessness crisis worsened by Hurricane Matthew.

"We have over 600 children documented through CCS, DSS that are going from couch to couch," Tranthem said.

Homelessness is something hundreds are battling right now in Florida. Capt. Christina Tranthem just completed a relief mission there while her husband managed the recovery process in the Sandhills.

"I worked from Monday to Friday on the ground getting supplies to people and really getting them ready for assistance, long term assistance," she said.

The Fayetteville Salvation Army will open its shelter's doors on December 1.
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