MBC seeking volunteers for disaster relief effort
Normal training requirement waived in view of overwhelming need
September 20, 2005
McCOMB, Miss.– While financial donations continue to be a key in helping victims of Hurricane Katrina, a Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) disaster relief coordinator says there are other ways Baptists across the state can help. In light of the tremendous and ongoing need for volunteers in Louisiana and Mississippi, the North American Mission Board has lifted training requirements for those who man Southern Baptist relief teams, said Gary Morrow, disaster relief coordinator.
“Anyone who can go and help, please let us know,” he said. “Even if you are not trained, we can use extra help dragging limbs or manning the kitchen.”
There are six requirements to volunteer:
1. At least 18 years old
2. A member of a Southern Baptist church
3. In good physical condition
4. Able to help pay for gas expenses in carpool
5. Pay for meals on the road – motel expense is possible while traveling to and from the work sites
6. Able to handle stress.
Although the requirements have been relaxed, the situation is far from easy for operations on the ground.
“These are hardship conditions,” Morrow said.
Untrained volunteers will get “on the job training,” will eat from the MBC’s disaster relief feeding units and will sleep at whatever shelter the unit is operating out of, most likely First Baptist Church, McComb, Miss., or in Hahnville, La.
The volunteers typically rotate out after 10-day shifts so the protracted nature of the damage along the Gulf Coast could exhaust the supply of trained workers before the work is done.
To volunteer or for more information, call the MBC’s Men’s Ministry and Missions Specialist Danny Decker at (573) 636-0400 ext. 630.