Tornado recovery efforts put strain on relief organizations - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Tornado recovery efforts put strain on relief organizations

Relief groups like the Red Cross are already in action across the south. But there is concern that the rash of violent weather could impact the resources of these organizations. Source: WLBT Relief groups like the Red Cross are already in action across the south. But there is concern that the rash of violent weather could impact the resources of these organizations. Source: WLBT
Brown says the recovery process for some areas takes months, even years, depending on the extent of the damage. Source: WLBT Brown says the recovery process for some areas takes months, even years, depending on the extent of the damage. Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Last week's storms put hundreds of families out of their homes in Mississippi, and while relief groups like the Red Cross are already in action across the South, there is concern the rash of violent weather could impact the resources of these organizations.

The American Red Cross and Salvation Army both have had boots on the ground in north Mississippi almost immediately after those tornadoes tore through at least seven counties, but it comes at a cost.

"It strains us as far as Mississippi is concerned," said John Brown Jr., who serves as a regional partner manager for the American Red Cross.

Brown said right now, those coordinators and volunteers are working to transition from relief to recovery.

"[We] start looking for unmet needs and how we can get individuals to recover faster. You'll have people with issues with insurance, medical issues, so it's a big coordination effort," Brown said.

It's also an effort the Red Cross doesn't shoulder alone.

Capt. Ken Chapman with the Jackson Salvation Army said they're funding relief efforts with money from their general operating fund.

He's hopeful they'll get the money back when people donate to the organization and designate it for tornado relief.

There are also other ways to help those in need, though.

Gov. Phil Bryant said in a news conference Monday that those wishing to offer assistance -- financial or otherwise -- can do so at msdisasterresponse.org.

All of that in some way helps take the pressure off other organizations as well.

Either way, Brown said they're up to the task.

"Things won't be the same when you're hit by a disaster, but one thing that we can make sure that we come in and let you know that we care, and give some assistance to help you build a bridge back to where normal is," Brown said.

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