Volunteers from Bradford help elderly Cumbrians hit by Storm Desmond flooding

VOLUNTEERS from a Bradford youth association travelled to Cumbria to help elderly and vulnerable people with the clean up process after the area was hit by severe flooding.A dozen members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association (AMYA) in Bradford North travelled to Cumbria on Saturday and visited the town of Keswick, which was left devastated by Storm Desmond at the start of this month.They helped residents affected by the storm to clear away the mud and debris left by the flood waters.

Saleem Amini, youth coordinator of AMYA Bradford North, took the group of volunteers up to Cumbria, where they were taken into the community to visit the houses of elderly people who had been hit by the flooding.He said: “We helped in two houses in particular.”In one home lived an elderly woman, who was 82 years old and her husband was had dementia.
“Mud and sludge was everywhere in their home and garden and we helped to clean it out, and used a pressure washer to clean up their garden.”The mud made their garden really slippy so they were effectively stranded in their home, and with the husband’s illness they needed some help.”Their neighbour had been affected too, with the flood water and mud going all the way to the back of their garage, which we helped clean out.”

The group also helped to clear the yard area of a nursery which was filled with mud left behind after the flood water had cleared, which the group all had to dig up and remove, which was hard work and took them a couple of hours.Some of the members of the association who volunteered to help included Zeeshan Malik, Asab Mir, Usman Shabbir and Subah Amini.
Saleem said that he and other members of Bradford’s AMYA branch will be continuing to visit those affect by floods to provide them with support and good wishes as they try to recover from the worst floods since records began.He said they will also be taking Christmas presents to some of the people who have been left devastated by the floods to try and bring them some joy during this tough time.

The north of England, Cumbria in particular, was hit by Storm Desmond at the start of December, when record rainfall left towns and villages underwater.Over 200mm of rain fell over a 24 period from December 4 to December 5, and a rain gauge in Honister in Cumbria measured record rainfall of 341mm, which was more than a month’s rain falling in just one day.Chancellor George Osborne created a £50 million emergency fund to help those affected by the floods, and the Cumbria Community Foundation has so far raised over £3 million in its flood appeal.