SYC 8 Days of Hope helps clear trees for people in need

Published: Aug. 29, 2021 at 11:18 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A year after the 2020 derecho destroyed 65% of the Cedar Rapids tree canopy, one group was still working on cleanup efforts.

Hope Community Development Director, Kyle Hunter was cheering now that a nasty-looking tree the derecho damaged was down. It won’t be tangled up in the power lines anymore as it was for a year. That would have been a $10,000 cost, especially difficult for a small nonprofit to pay.

“It would have cut into our ability to help people,” said Hunter.

Hunter’s organization helps people turn their life around with supportive housing, career training, and mentorship. The tree was dangling near one of the support houses. The job of cutting the tree down was done by another nonprofit, 8 Days of Hope. The organization focuses on disaster relief cleanup.

“We want to give hope to the hopeless,” said Missionary Brian Dregits.

Dregits said the response stemmed from the amount of need he continued to see while driving around. He said he reached out to several churches to compile a list of people who might still need help physically or financially.

“For the people who have been having to look at these views of damaged trees for over a year, this was a chance Jesus hasn’t forgotten about them,” he said.

The effort allowed for people to save thousands of dollars, and nonprofits like Hope CDA keep helping people in need.

“Seeing Christian nonprofits partnering to the way we did always excites me,” said Hunter.

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