Local Volunteers Reach Katrina-Damaged Mississippi To Help Rebuild

A group of skilled San Diego volunteers will arrive in Mississippi Sunday as part of a week-long project to rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina along the Gulf Coast, a relief official said.

International Relief Teams organized the trip, said program assistant Tamra Mackevics. Nineteen volunteers make up the team, including 14 San Diego residents. The other five come from other states, including Iowa, Idaho and Georgia, Mackevics said.

The group plans to work in the Mississippi communities of Ocean Spring, Moss Point, Gautier Island and Pascagoula.

This is the sixth International Relief team sent to areas hard hit by Hurricane Katrina in September 2005, Mackevics said. The first, a medical team, left shortly after the hurricane struck New Orleans.

"We want to send out teams as long as we can," Mackevics said. "We're always looking for skilled or semi-skilled volunteers."

Those wishing to volunteer may call (619) 284-7979 or apply online at www.irteams.org.

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