Warehouse Creates More Volunteer Opportunities - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Warehouse Creates More Volunteer Opportunities

Local Methodist churches have seen around 35,000 volunteers come and go to help restore the Coast since Katrina. Tonight, Keli Rabon shows us how one Jackson County church's new volunteer warehouse is coming along, and how its services will help people in South Mississippi rebuild their lives.   

"They've been so active in the ministry here, this will help them continue on in that ministry," project coordinator Robert Sharp says.   

Robert Sharp with the United Methodist Church in Vancleave is talking about the church's new multipurpose facility.   

 "On this end, we can house about 85 volunteers with shower facilities that are indoors and not outdoors, handicap accessible, will also have a kitchen, communication room, tool room to go along with the warehouse," Sharp says.               

The 10,500 square foot warehouse, still under construction, will be used to house volunteers who make the trip to South Mississippi to help residents build back after Katrina.   

"This building is going to end up costing close to $300,000. But it will be here for long term use. And when we don't need it for disaster, it's awesome, the church gets to use it for ministry," Sharp says.  

While nearly a hundred volunteers and truckloads of supplies will be housed here, the building has another important purpose. It will serve as a transition point for people in need, like Delphine Williams.       

"I couldn't see a way to even have my house fixed after the hurricane. I didn't know what to do so I asked my pastor. So he got in touch with the pastor over there and made me feel real good," Williams says.   

Thanks to the Vancleave church, Williams has seen the kindness of volunteers first hand - some of whom have made as many as seven trips from Florida to help repair and rebuild her home.   

"They're putting the finish touches on my doors and my windows, so I can hang my curtains," she says. After months living in a FEMA trailer in front yard, Williams begins to get settled in her newly repaired home.    

 "Oh I think I'll get some sleep. (laughs) After unpacking boxes and everything, I'll get some rest," she says.               

And with this team effort of volunteers and churches working together to help residents rebuild Williams knows that rest is right around the corner   

The facility is one of three being built along the Coast.   Hancock and Harrison county will each have their own, in addition to this Jackson county building.   They estimate that Vancleave's is about 40 percent done and should be completed in November.   

By Keli Rabon

Powered by Frankly