LAYTON — After returning home from a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints two years ago, a Davis County man is serving the people of the Philippines again in the aftermath of the disaster wrought upon the country by Typhoon Haiyan.
Miles Bell manages the Layton branch of his father’s auto repair business, Dave’s Auto Center.
Bell’s mother, Allison Bell, said her son thinks of his friends in the Philippines as family and hasn’t been able to sleep while worrying about their safety. She said he has been trying to figure out a way to return to the country and help in relief efforts, but transportation to the island is limited and difficult to obtain if you aren’t part of a designated relief group.
So, Miles Bell came up with a way to help his friends without having to leave the states.
The Centerville branch of Dave’s Auto Center is typically closed Saturdays, but the shop will be open this Saturday, Nov. 23, to raise money for disaster relief efforts in the Philippines.
“We’re donating our time from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. We’re doing work at no charge,” Bell said.
The shop foreman at the Layton branch, Brian Hanni, and a few other technicians also have ties to and affection for the Philippines.
“Customers will donate the money that would normally go toward paying us, the mechanics, to a charity of their choice that is helping with disaster relief efforts in the Philippines. They can either bring in their own parts, or we can provide the parts to them at wholesale cost. We’re asking for a minimum donation of $50 per hour of work.”
Bell said customers may choose the charity they are most comfortable with from a list that is being compiled. The list will include the Red Cross and the LDS Humanitarian Fund.
“It’s a great opportunity to give back. These people don’t have much, even in good circumstances. After a typhoon and a storm surge and the 200 mph winds that went through there, they went from not having much to not having anything at all,” Bell said.
“These people would do anything to give to us, even when they have nothing. So, I just think it’s the perfect opportunity for us, when we have so much, to give a little bit to them. It’s something easy — you get your car fixed, and you’re giving to a family that needs things like water and food.”
About 30 appointment slots will be available. Allison Bell recommends that those who intend to take part in Saturday’s fundraising effort make an appointment to ensure that all necessary parts for vehicle repairs are on hand and no one has to wait.
Appointments can be made by calling 801-295-5081 or 801-444-2797, or by accessing the “Request Appointment Form” under the contact menu at www.davesautorepairutah.com.
The Centerville branch of Dave’s Auto Center is at 335 S. Frontage Road.