More than 130 families in Beaufort County will receive assistance from Martha’s Thrift Store & Food Pantry in Belhaven as a result of a three month food drive conducted by Cape Hatteras Motel. The drive, “From the Outer Banks to the Inner Banks with Love,” was spearheaded by Jan and Dave Dawson, the motel owners, after Hurricane Florence in September.
“We here on Hatteras Island know full well what it is like to recover from a hurricane, ” said Jan. “The needs go far past the immediate, so that is why we targeted the Thanksgiving season to make our delivery.”
Martha’s is a non-denominational non-profit run by volunteers from six churches in the Belhaven area. “This will mean so much to the families we serve,” said Roy Williams, a member of Martha’s Board and the Food Director. “We just can’t say thank you enough to all of the donors who supported this effort.”
Motel guests throughout the fall season brought donations once the word got out on social media and by word of mouth. But there were also other donors as well.
“We had visitors on the island who were not staying with us just stop by to drop off donations and to say hello,” said Dave. “We even had folks mail us gift cards so we could purchase additional supplies to take to the food pantry.” Dawson also noted that the Buxton NAPA store contributed some of their own money to put toward the U-Haul rental.
“We initially thought we’d have donations that would hopefully fill our truck,” said Jan. “But the response was so overwhelming we needed something bigger. We really appreciated the support from Woody and his team at the Buxton NAPA.”
Belhaven is an Inner Banks community that received significant sound and river flooding during Florence. Many businesses and families are still working to recover.
“We know that the larger cities and towns got a lot of attention during the storm,” said Dave. “We wanted to go somewhere smaller, like the communities on our island, who might not otherwise get any real help.”