RAINBOW CONNECTION: The Evans Head team works on the roof of a Vanuatan church as a rainbow shines down.
RAINBOW CONNECTION: The Evans Head team works on the roof of a Vanuatan church as a rainbow shines down.

Busy rebuilding Vanuatu

IT'S been a month since seven dedicated members of Evans Head Presbyterian Church left to go for a week and help with the clean up in Vanuatu.

After Cyclone Pam ripped through the tiny South Pacific country on March 13, many buildings still standing were in desperate need of repair.

Local couple Coady and Kiralee Strong assembled a team of helpers to go and fix roofs and provide food and clothing where needed.

"We got more done than we thought we would get done in trying conditions," Coady said.

"It was raining for 90% of the time and we were doing 10-11-hour days."

The men took over plenty of tools and clothing which helped them repair the roof of a local church and provide food packs to widows and orphans in nearby villages.

"It hasn't all really sunk in yet," Coady said. "The main highlight was seeing how appreciative people there were. The way they responded was really good.

"A lot of them cried."

The trip was such a special time for many of the men that there is talk of a possible return visit at a later date.

"There is more stuff to be done, but not sure yet how," Coady said.

"All the guys bonded really well."

The only injury the team sustained was when Brody Aleckson received a belt on the head from a plank.

"It got bandaged up and he kept going," Coady said.

"It came close to needing stitches but he's okay now."



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