Simon Bruinsma has a newfound sense of how blessed he is. Bruinsma was one of 10 workers from Chatham-Kent (Ontario) Hydro who traveled to Slidell, La., for three weeks to help restore electricity to victims of Hurricane Katrina.
Bruinsma, a member of Dresden (Ontario) Christian Reformed Church, worked on a team repairing power lines. Dirk Tewinkle, a member of Blenheim (Ontario) CRC, was also on the crew.
Bruinsma had a taste of hurricane relief last year in Florida but said this trip was much different. “The people here were totally devastated. Everything they owned is totally gone. …They became refugees,” he said. The sight of orphaned young children asking for their parents was particularly difficult for the crew.
Bruinsma said the experience made some of his crewmates who are nonbelievers think again about “a higher power.” “We all agreed this was really a humbling experience. Where we come from, we have nothing to complain about,” he said.