Broad Street United Methodist has made its facilities at the Johnston Woods retreat center available for volunteers to stay.
Johnston Woods is a rustic retreat used to help promote spiritual and personal growth throughout door recreation, fellowship, study and mediation.
Following the disaster, volunteers needed a place to stay and rest after long days of cleanup. Johnston Woods was able to house 87 volunteers for a week at a time.
Eight groups have been accommodated so far. The groups include Beaver Ridge United Methodist Church from Knoxville; Buford First United Methodist Church in Buford, Ga.; Calvary Baptist Church in Alcoa; Christ Community Church from Pennsylvania; TFFC-fire Chaplains Missions group Relief; Christ United Church of Christ form Orville, Ohio; Rivertown community Church, Blountstown, Fla.; and United Methodist Church of Murfreesboro.
Unfortunately, several groups were turned away because of prior scheduling.
The volunteers have expressed appreciation for the shelter at Johnston Woods. One group from Ohio sent the church a check for $600 to be used at Johnston Woods.
Dean and Barbara Schmidt, property managers at Johnston Woods, said the volunteers have been wonderful to work with and leave the facilities in “shipshape” order.
Housing is still available at the center for disaster workers if prior events have not been scheduled for the center.