Volunteer Hattiesburg, the state's newest Volunteer Center, opened a Volunteer Response Center on Friday.
"One of the main purposes of this center is to help bring volunteers all under one umbrella," said Director of Volunteer Hattiesburg, Dena Parker. "Probably one of the most critical pieces is so that we can track volunteer hours because that helps the community in their match to the federal government for the disaster recovery costs."
The VRC, located at the Hattiesburg Train Depot began training volunteers early on Friday to assist in operating the center. Volunteer groups are asked to stop by so that the center can calculate the total hours volunteered in the community.
Pine Belt residents who would like to help with tornado relief efforts in Hattiesburg should stop by Hattiesburg Train Depot, which will be open until 4 p.m. on Friday, and from 8 – 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The response center will operate daily as long as the volunteer flow is heavy. Once registered, volunteers will be deployed to help at various sites managed by local organizations.
Residents of tornado-affected areas needing assistance should contact 1-800-621-3362.
Donations can be made through PayPal HERE, or by mailing a check or money order to 301 Buschman Street, Hattiesburg MS 39401.
The Hattiesburg Train Depot is located at 308 Newman Street.
The response center is made possible by collaboration between Volunteer Hattiesburg and R3SM, Inc., the USM Center for Community and Civic Engagement, Lamar County and Forrest County Emergency Operations, the United Way of South Mississippi Volunteer Center, Mississippi VOAD partners, Volunteer Mississippi, AmeriCorps programs and other city, community and faith-based organizations.
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