SAGINAW (WJRT) (9/14/2017) - After watching footage of devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in south Texas, Saginaw Mayor Dennis Browning knew wanted to more than open his wallet to help.
On Friday morning, he will depart on the 20-hour trip south to help people affected by the historic storm and unprecedented flooding. Browning will be bringing supplies to help with the cleanup donated by Peace Lutheran Church in Saginaw.
"When you see that flooding on TV, you get that helpless feeling -- 'Oh I wish I could do something,'" Browning said.
The congregation at Peace Lutheran, where Browning is a member, wanted to do more and turned to a close friend of a member for inspiration.
"One of our members has a very good friend down there. His house is flooded -- eight feet of water in his house," Browning said. "Knowing that he was going down there, he asked him, 'What do you (need), what can I bring you?' His answer was a mop and a bucket."
So 200 buckets are on their way to Texas, each filled with cleaning items in short supply nowadays. All of them are desperately needed by people trying to wipe away the mess left by the flooding.
"Each of these buckets contain a number of items inside from bleach to comet to rags to even gloves," Browning said. "It's not a lot, but it means a lot to a person that is really struggling to get that kind of stuff."
Peace Lutheran is partnering with a church in Houston to distribute the cleaning supplies into the community.
"We will supporting them now for the next year because, as you know, any time you are in one of these difficult situations it's not something that's over with in a day. It can take years, so we are going to continue to support them," said Henry Pahlkutter of Peace Lutheran.
The group also is bringing diaper bags and formula to giveaway around Houston, as well.
"We're very fortunate, we're very blessed here," Browning said. "We have to share blessings with them down there and to give them a hand."