Case workers needed after 2nd round of strong storms

2/8/2008

Full-time and part-time case management volunteers are needed to respond to communities touched by two rounds of severe weather.

Several tornadoes struck Mississippi Feb. 5. The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) and its regional partners are responding as rapidly as conditions allow after the tornadoes that struck five southern states.

Damage was reported in Alcorn, DeSoto, Lafayette, and Tunica counties in Mississippi. No damage has been reported to Mississippi United Methodist churches or other conference facilities. "In terms of homes and non-commercial property, it appears that the Lafayette County area is the most affected," said Rev. C.J. Caufield, conference disaster response coordinator.

According to UMCOR, more than 65 people were known dead and scores were injured, primarily in Arkansas and Tennessee, the states hardest hit. There was also damage in southern Kentucky and northern Alabama.

No volunteer teams are needed at this time. Rev. Robert McCoy, conference Volunteers in Mission coordinator, can be reached at 662.213.6400 or robert@baldwynfumc.org.

Offerings for tornado response can be sent to conference Treasurer David Stotts. Please designate gifts for "February Tornadoes."

Caufield said the most urgent need now is for volunteer case workers. To volunteer, contact Caufield at 601.940.7272 or disasters@mississippi-umc.org.

Training for case management volunteers will be offered Feb. 18-19 at Adaton UMC in Starkville. Part-time and full-time volunteers are needed to assist families affected by both the Feb. 5 storms and the Jan. 10 storms that caused damage in Caledonia and other areas. "The primary target is volunteers in Lowndes, Holmes, Lafayette and neighboring counties," said Caufield, plus "those potentially interested in working in case management in future disasters."