MEMA encourages tornado victims to seek stable shelter - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

MEMA encourages tornado victims to seek stable shelter

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By  Julie Straw - bio | email | twitter

YAZOO CITY, MS (WLBT) - The "volunteer city" on the corner of Broadway and Highway 49 was shrinking as rain clouds moved in.

"We're trying to beat the weather.  We're hoping that most of this stuff will be distributed before the rain kicks in," said WWISCAA Relief Coordinator James Dodd pointing to the boxes of food.  "If there is still a need we will just stay and work out of the truck."

FEMA officials expect their Disaster Recovery Center at the National Guard Armory on Gordon Avenue to open in the next day or so.  They are instructing people to register by phone at (800) 621-3362 or online at www.disasterassistance.gov first.

"After you register and if you have questions about your applications you can come to the Disaster Recovery Center and someone here at the Disaster Recovery Center will help you," said FEMA Spokesperson Don Daniel.

The needs of hundreds of tornado victims is constant.  Basics like toilet paper, food and water were handed out by the arm loads at Yazoo City Church of Christ.

" These are wonderful people up here and they need some help.  I need some boots on the ground," said Yazoo City Church of Christ volunteer Pat Brock.

She was coordinating relief efforts at the church and fears for those living in rural areas without a stable place to seek shelter.

"We're finding generational, where we got grandpa and grandma, son and husband, grandson and wife and kids in their cars that all had adjacent property. All the houses are gone," said Brock.

MEMA officials were encouraging people sleeping in damaged homes or tentS to stay at a shelter or with friends until the storm system passes.  Volunteers are standing by, prepared for the next wave of bad weather.

"We're looking at more damage.  We're looking at going out there, doing more work.  It's going to be on going, but we're here to help and we're here until we're not needed anymore," said Mississippi Commission for Volunteer Service Public Affairs Coordinator Emily Wilemon.

The Red Cross had shelters standing by in Yazoo, Choctaw, and Holmes counties if needed.

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