“We’re on our way”

The phones are ringing off the hook today, but this call was different.

“We’re on our way!” an emphatic voice said with great authority over the phone. Well, great, I said. What time are you going to get here? “We’ll be there by about six o’clock,” said the voice. It was three in the afternoon, normally closing time for the emergency supply center run by the Community Resource Center. Where are you coming from? “We’re coming from Dayton, Ohio!” Well, alrighty then. We’ll stay open.

That good old Southern phrase “took a notion” comes to mind. Sarah Smith, the voice over the phone, and the extended Smith family of Dayton, Ohio, just took a notion to collect emergency supplies for the flood victims of Tennessee. They created a website, Nashville TN Flood Relief, and asked for donations. They arrived in the largest U-Haul there is, one they obviously paid for out of their own pockets.

From left, Hillary Smith, Sarah Smith, Melody Deek, Jerry Smith, Kenny Williams

They didn’t create a strategic plan and the action steps to implement it. They didn’t assess who their stakeholders were. They just took a notion to provide help, gathered up supplies, got in the truck and drove.

It turns out the extended Smith family and Music City have something in common besides compassion. They love bluegrass. They are planning a bluegrass concert to raise money for the flood victims, many of whom are no doubt musicians. If you think Music City stops at the borders of Davidson County you are dead wrong.

In the last few days, some of us have wondered why the national media hasn’t put Middle Tennessee’s epic flood at the top of their breaking news list. Some people have suggested it’s because there’s no “bad” news. The flood is tragic news, of course. But we haven’t had looting. We haven’t had a breakdown in government response. Emergency crews, police, firefighters and volunteers have been everywhere. Everyone, everyone, has responded quickly and appropriately. The Southern way.

Today, the warehouse is filling up fast, thanks to people like the Smith family who just took a notion to help. The Community Resource Center loves the notion of an empty warehouse, of course. That means that emergency supplies are getting to the people who need them the most, our most fragile citizens.

“We’re on our way.” Yes, indeed, we are. As a city and region we are on the road to recovery.  Help has arrived, some of it from the most unexpected places.

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About CRC Nashville

Who are we? We are literally two chicks - Catherine Mayhew and Betsy Everett, and a warehouse - the Community Resource Center (CRC). In short, CRC is a non-profit organization that provides household goods, furniture, and appliances to people in desperate need. Think of us as Robin Hoods – without the stealing. Catherine is a former journalist and Betsy is a marketing chick. We are both devoted to acquiring stuff – good stuff, no junk – because that’s what our most fragile citizens deserve. If you have metal desks, televisions that don’t work or underwear you don’t want anymore, don’t give it to us. We’ll sneer at you. If you are companies that have excess primo stuff like furniture in good condition, school supplies, personal hygiene items or pretty much anything else, we’ll be your new best friends. For more information: www.crcnashville.org Fan, Follow, and Friend CRC or Join our Cause CRCNashville - Twitter Community Resource Center - Facebook and Myspace Community Resource Center (CRC) - Facebook Cause

3 thoughts on ““We’re on our way”

  1. Great, great post. Can’t believe you wrote this so eloquently and quickly after today. Great to get to work alongside you.

  2. It was an honor for our famliy to help out. Our family always puts others frist its just what we do. It was so nice to meet you folks you all have big hearts and I will forever be telling people about the work you do. We will be sending more in a few weeks just let us know what the top items needed are and we will do our best to get them to you. THANK YOU ladies for doing what you do…..in my eyes you are HEROES!!

  3. Just wanted to say Thank you for allowing us to be there. It was such a blessing to see everyone come together and do what they can to help out. Our family knows no strangers, and are always willing to lend a helping hand.
    May GOD Bless you Ladies in all your efforts, and for making a big big difference in the lives of thoes that need it the most.
    Hillary

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