Army serves as Maui prepares
Salvation Army volunteer team assists island’s first responders.
By Daniel de Castro
A group of Salvation Army volunteers on Maui provided food, water and supplies during a Community Emergency Response Training (CERT) drill as first responders tested their skills in preparation for the aftermath of the next major hurricane.
Cliff Spencer, volunteer supervisor for the Army on Maui, trained the volunteers, most of whom are homeless clients from The Salvation Army in Kahului.
Spencer has years of experience responding to disasters all over the world while working with the Red Cross. In the last two years, he single-handedly formed and trained the volunteer team, which effectively responded after recent fires and floods on Maui.
“I give them all the credit,” Spencer said, speaking of the volunteers. His team has been well trained to respond with care and precision to carry out the task of helping those affected by disasters.
At the mock post-hurricane scene, the volunteers served more than 200 people, working like clockwork from set-up to cleanup. According to Spencer, it is customary at the start of their service that everyone gets “all prayed up” to tackle the important task at hand.
Driven by his passion to help others, Spencer feels blessed to use his experience in disaster response.
“When I wake up each day, I ask the Lord to use me and to bring those who are hurting so that I could be of service,” he said.