Local Church Helps Katrina Victims Get Fresh Start

WILMINGTON -- Looking at photos taken from Biloxi, Mississippi, ladies from the Port City Community Church gathered to reminisce about the devastation they saw following Hurricane Katrina.  The unbelievable images -- boats on top of cars, houses turned into rubbles -- were a small sample of what they witnessed.

"You know you'd head people say they actually saw their family members being drowned and taken away," said volunteer Diane Harty.  "For them to just get through that on a daily basis, it just melts my heart."

These Wilmington residents are just a few of the thousands of volunteers who have helped people rebuild their homes and their lives.

"They're just so happy and can't believe that your volunteering and coming down there," said volunteer Denise Fazier, "and spending your time to help them when they can't do anything for you or pay you or anything.  It is just so wonderful to be a part of the effort to get their lives back together."

The group from Port City piled into a van that read "On A Mission" on the side: its members were on a mission to help the people of Biloxi one trip at a time.

The members mad made six trips since the storm hit, each time seeing little changes adding up to make a big difference.

"It seems as though now a lot of people are somewhere," said volunteer Marilyn Dale.  "Before, they were just clusters in group homes and now they're situated."

One of the folks the volunteers had taken under their wing was "Mrs. B."  The 82-year-old lost her husband, dog and home to Katrina, but the volunteers helped build a new house for a new start.

Reported by Kim Gebbia

If you would like to learn more about the Port City Community Church or support their effort, visit www.portcitychurch.org.