JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - FEMA community relations teams are busy going door-to-door in the storm damaged neighborhoods of South Mississippi. The teams are canvassing those neighborhoods to make sure residents know about any government grant or loan money they might be eligible to receive after Hurricane Isaac.
"She just told us a few people down there are affected, so that's where we're headed," said FEMA team member Jeanones Austin, as he and Barbara Robinson went door-to-door in Helena with details about FEMA assistance.
"Once you call within three to five days, FEMA will send an adjuster to your home," he told home owner Mary Ann Stringfellow.
She was among the lucky few in their neighborhood that escaped significant flood damage.
"And the rain was so bad here. We couldn't come home for three days. They wouldn't let us come home," she recalled.
Donnie and Tara Vance were among the weary and water logged thanks to Isaac.
"My porches and my decks and sidewalks all buckled. We was underwater for about three and a half solid days," he said.
Monday's visit from the FEMA team alerted the Vance's that even though they have insurance, they may still be eligible for some assistance.
"As long as it's Isaac-related, you're entitled to register with FEMA. Don't take it upon yourself and say you're not qualified. Let the inspector do it," Austin advised the home owner.
Throughout the Helena community, aside from the obvious flood water damage, mold is also becoming an issue. Even in homes that took on very little water, mold can quickly become a concern.
"And mold, you can already smell in the neighborhood. It's starting to grow," said FEMA representative Thomas Hardy. "That's why they've got to get it. Even if they've had only a couple of inches, that gets inside your walls and unless you get it out, it's going to cause a problem."
The FEMA teams will help storm victims address some of those problems and inform them about grants or loan money they might be eligible to receive to assist with recovery efforts.
FEMA says even if home owners are denied assistance they should follow-up. Sometimes the rejection is because of a simple error, such as the wrong social security number put on the application.