Serve RI volunteers help community dig out Saturday

ServeRI Shoveling_256520

EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Streets across Southern New England were packed with people and vehicles Saturday – as residents cleared away the remnants of Friday’s winter storm.

The sun was shining – which helped the melting process – as volunteers from Serve Rhode Island answered hundreds of requests for assistance.

On Martin Street in East Providence, James Waters was chipping away at the remaining snow.

“I have neighbors on my block that were shoveling out people they didn’t know and it’s really nice to live in this kind of community,” Waters said.

He said this is his second year as a volunteer in the Serve RI storm assistance program for the elderly or disabled.

The great part about the program, according to Waters, is that volunteers only agree to take on the amount of work they can handle.

“If you have the energy to shovel ten houses, then can send you to ten people that need help. That’s great,” he said. “But if you can only do one, that’s awesome too and that helps everyone out.”

In North Providence, Tony Wild was out clearing a driveway and the front steps of a home Saturday morning.

“I like the snow, even though a lot of people don’t,” he said. “And it’s just really great to help people who actually have a need for it.”

Wild said he is originally from the south and he thinks winter in Rhode Island is invigorating.

“Every time there’s a storm that comes through, I get very excited and I like shoveling,” he said. “I like all the pain that comes with it. People assure me that’s going to pass but at least until it does I don’t mind helping other people out with it.”

According to Serve RI, the storm assistance program is for people who have no other resources and don’t have the financial means to pay someone to clear their snow.

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