Volunteers running low to rebuild Katrina damaged homes

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - By Patrice Clark – bio | email

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - The Mississippi United Methodist Disaster Response Team says more than five years after Hurricane Katrina, volunteers are still needed to help rebuild homes. Unfortunately, there just aren't enough to meet demand, and the organization is having to turn away families in need.

This week, the response group teamed up with some Pennsylvania volunteers to rebuild Katrina damaged homes in Moss Point and Pascagoula. For volunteer Danielle Klinger, this trip is her fourth.

"The people in Mississippi are amazing, that's why I keep coming back," Klinger said.

Disaster site coordinator Dee Boreing said lately it has been a struggle to get more people like Klinger to sign up to help. She blames the decrease on the tight economy and the misconception that Katrina rebuilding is over on the coast.

"We have seen about a 30 percent drop, I would say," Boreing said.

There's still more rebuilding wok that needs to be done across the coast. The disaster response team has more than 100 homes on the books that are in need of repair, so volunteers are definitely needed.

"You can work one day, you can work a whole week, and you can come in a half a day if there is something you can help us do."

When people give their time to help storm victims rebuild, it puts smiles on their faces.

"I am so happy. I thought I would never get it done," Louise Ragsdale said of his newly rebuilt home in Moss Point. Ragsdale said the volunteers have also renewed the hope she lost after the devastating storm.

"After four, five years of living with someone and to think one day God's going to bless me to be in here means a lot."

If you would like to volunteer to rebuild homes, call the Mississippi United Methodist Response Team at (866) 435-7091.

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