SEARSPORT – The volunteers behind a local wood bank said they helped 130 households last winter, and they’re on track to have another busy season.
Something just as typically Maine as snow and lumber is neighbors helping neighbors. And that’s exactly what volunteers with Waldo County Woodshed were doing Sunday morning.
“We buy the wood from local loggers, we raise money and buy logs, bring it all to our main yard in Searsmont and then we hire somebody to do a lot of the processing,” said Bob MacGregor, the founder of Waldo County Woodshed.
They have nine distribution sites, like the one our news team visited in Searsport, where those who need help heating their homes can pick up wood.
This marks their sixth season.
“It’s something I’m familiar with, burning wood and cutting wood, and I had a lot of connections in the wood industry so when the idea came along it just seemed like something I could probably coordinate,” said MacGregor.
Some of the wood in Searsport was donated from a local church.
MacGregor said their first year they went through 20 cords. Last year, they gave away 170 and ran out March 1st.
He said so far this winter, they’re on pace to be just as busy as last year.
“We get a lot of thank you’s. We occasionally get hugs, sometimes we get cookies…sometimes they just need help a couple times, some people need help all winter long,” said MacGregor.
Almon ‘Bud’ Rivers offers up part of his yard to host the Searsport distribution site.
He got involved with Waldo County Woodshed after reaching out about extra wood he had.
“And he mentioned they just lost a distribution point on this side of the county, so I said ‘well, we can do it right here'”, said Rivers.
According to volunteers, they’re always fundraising and looking for more hands. They’ll be helping people until the wood runs out.