Volunteers On A Mission To Help Ivan Victims

We told you earlier this week about a group of United Methodist Volunteers who've made it their mission to help out residents of Gulf Shores, Alabama after their unwanted visit from Hurricane Ivan.

Well, they represent only a small fraction of the thousands of people who are stepping up to contribute in that extensive recovery effort.

Only about a week and a half removed from Hurricane Ivan's nearby landfall, Gulf Shores officials are just now able to focus on removing the extensive debris left all across this once picturesque resort destination.

"We've finally been able to get people into the beach area to their property to kind of assess their damage and begin to start making some preliminary movement toward clean up and debris removal. But the bare essentials of daily survival such as a hot meal are still badly needed," says Gulf Shores Mayor David Bodenhamer

"They're here and there's nothing to eat and they may have a box of crackers or something, some lunch meat or whatever, but to get a chance to get a hot meal and they didn't have to cook it, and they didn't have to scrounge around and find the items and so forth. We see it on their faces. It means a lot to them," says disaster relief coordinator Dennie Hinkle

And those essentials are being supplied by people from as far away as the pacific northwest.

"They're still without power and water and that's tough on a person. It takes it's toll every day. And we're here to help them out and give them that support. To close as South Mississippi," says volunteer Barry Shullanberger

"We had the Northrop Grumman Corporation out of Pascagola just sent 3 tractor trailer loads of supplies that their employees made possible. The Gulfport Police Department has been in here with volunteers going door to door with chain saws, cleaning up peoples yards who aren't able to do that themselves. We just had all kinds of people calling in offering support and aid and it's very much appreciated."