Manitoba siblings recognized for helping fill hundreds of sandbags to protect friends’ home

A Manitoba brother and sister duo have been honoured by their school for pitching in to protect their friends’ home from rising floodwaters.

Avery, 11, and Natalie Friesen, 8, spent two afternoons filling sandbags to keep water away from their friends’ home near Rosenort, Man.

The family was evacuated to Winnipeg, Man. and called for help from the community with sandbagging efforts.

The siblings sprang into action, joining the community in filling 450 sandbags over two days. They were the youngest volunteers in the group.

Avery sits with his friend Eli, who was evacuated from his home due to flooding concerns. The community pitched in to help fill and stack sandbags to keep floodwaters at bay. (Image Source: Rhonda Friesen)

“The water was going over their whole yard,” Natalie remembered.

“It was close to their driveway and it flooded their barn,” Avery chimed in.

The duo said volunteering was fun. The best part? Natalie liked climbing the giant hill made of sand and Avery liked filling the sandbags up, but not hauling them to the truck.

“That part was just so heavy,” he said.

Natalie was one of the youngest volunteers who pitched in to fill hundreds of sandbags to protect a friends’ home from flooding. (Image Source: Renee Waldner)

The Friesens’ hard work paid off in more ways than one. Rosenort School named the siblings the RedHawks of the Week, noting the two worked tirelessly while remaining cheerful and encouraging.

The kids’ mom Rhonda Friesen said she was excited they were recognized for their hard work.

“They just did it willingly. They didn’t do it for any recognition, but it’s always nice when they get recognized for something like that,” she said.

While the siblings still have sore arms from the sandbag blitz, they said they would do it again.

“It’s fun ‘cause you get to help other people,” Natalie said.

“It’s hard work, but you get the job done,” Avery agreed.

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