Volunteers and relief supplies needed to help backwater flood victims

Updated: Sep. 17, 2019 at 7:38 PM CDT
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WARREN COUNTY, Miss. (WLBT) - Warren County’s emergency management and nonprofit organizations are working together to help folks affected by the historic backwater flooding. The aid comes as flood victims wait and hope for a federal disaster declaration, which could provide money to rebuild their homes and lives.

Helping the flood victims that need it the most: that’s what the emergency management team has been doing in Warren County along with the United Way of West Central Mississippi and other groups from around the region. Still, they say their efforts are not enough, and they are calling on more community members to lend a helping hand.

“Our neighbors have been dealing with this for over eight months and even though the water is gone the devastation is still present,” said United Way Executive Director Michele Connelly.

Officials with United Way say they have collected more than $70,000 along with relief supplies for flood victims. There is everything from water, to cleaning supplies to safety gear.

“We are expending as fast as we receive. One hundred percent of the dollar donations and dollars go back into the communities affected,” said Connelly.

Over at the Warren County Emergency Management Office, EMA Director John Elfer and a special volunteer disaster team are helping round up groups of volunteers who are ready and willing to cleanup what the historic backwater flooding left behind.

“We’ve had a lot of church groups, we’ve had some civic groups, we’ve had AmeriCorps, which is located here in Vicksburg, to help. They have been doing everything from picking up sandbags, picking up debris, to cleaning up homes,” Elfer said.

Both the United Way and the emergency management team are optimistic that more generous people will sign up to give their time or money to help on this long road to recovery.

“Anything that you feel called to give is much appreciated. We need water, we need Gatorade, cleaning supplies and we need masks. Anything will be greatly appreciated it while we go into the cleanup and rebuild stage,” said Connelly.

“Without the federal money piece of it, the only way we can fill those gaps on these long-term recovery needs is with volunteers and donations,” Elfer added.

If you would like to donate money, materials or your time, please call United Way Of West Central Mississippi at (601)-636-1733 or the Warren County Office of Emergency Management (601)- 636-1544.

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