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Rescue, Relief and Recovery

September 5, 2005

Rescue , Relief and Recovery are the phases that happen after a disaster.

We just returned from the gulf coast of Mississippi. I didn’t see any search and rescue squads, but that doesn’t mean they are not still operating.

We first went to Hattiesburg to work and we helped to unload a 18-wheeler of supplies sent from the Southside church in Atlanta. Hattiesburg was starting to get to the recovery phase. They continue and will for some time with relief. There were a number of helpers at our contact point so … I went to find the number of the Gateway Church of Christ, since I knew they were acting as a rally point. I found the book (that one that has all the churches of Christ listed in it) being used by and elder. He was on the phone and got off saying that he had just spoken to an elder at the Ocean Springs Church of Christ and that they needed workers. Kim and I and the 4 men that came with us loaded up and headed to Ocean Springs.

I can give you all sorts of detail about the physical damage but I think you can get that elsewhere.

We arrived at the end of a worship time held on the front lawn of the church’s property. Afterwards we loaded several trailers of supplies and took them to Orange Grove in Gulfport. After that stop we went back to Ocean Springs to help an elderly member at her house which had suffered from the storm surge. 10 houses down from hers was a scene of total devastation! And I mean total. Wow.

This morning (Monday) we met with a large group at our home congregation (Starkville Church of Christ) and laid out our organization for acting as a rally point for helping those south of us.

Due to our already existing involvement in Picayune and Ocean Springs and Philadelphia (for rural efforts) we are trying to get this loose network of points on the map to act as a distribution chain and as local contacts.

We will accept monetary donations, goods (which went possible we will push south on the truck it is coming on) (at other times we will take smaller amounts and prepare and ship them), we will organize individuals into groups and help groups know where to go and what to expect.

It is the organization of labor and delivery of shipments that I am working on.

In Ocean Springs the church building has power and phone and is acting as a distributor to surrounding towns. We will send much to them to determine where it goes next. There is a meeting of church leaders surrounding Picayune tomorrow. They will try of organize there as well. Some of this is already happening there.

I am out of the news loop so; I will have to catch up.

THE MAIN THING I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW IS THAT WORKERS ARE NEEDED. IT IS SAFE AND YOU CAN GET THERE AND BACK. MANY WILL BE NEEDED FOR A LONG TIME STILL.

More later.

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