Relief supplies heading to Mississippi tornado survivors


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As southern Mississippi communities recover from a tornado that tore through Hattiesburg and surrounding areas on Feb. 10, World Vision planned to ship a truckload of relief supplies on Thursday.

The shipment from World Vision’s disaster response warehouse in New York is intended to help 1,500 tornado survivors with food kits, hygiene kits, cleaning supplies, and clothing.

"In the United States, tornado season doesn'’t traditionally start until March," said Phyllis Freeman, World Vision's domestic disaster director. "Fortunately, World Vision is still prepared to help families and children right away, given that our team has strategically prepositioned relief supplies at key sites across the country for deployment at any time of the year."

The shipment will go to the organization's Mississippi church partners in Hattiesburg, Oakdale, and Petal. In the days after the tornado, World Vision contacted more than 100 former and current partner organizations in southern Mississippi—many of which had joined World Vision in responding to Hurricane Katrina in 2005—to assess their needs and ability to help again.

"It's World Vision's hope and prayer that these relief supplies can serve as a small reminder of God's love and provision," Freeman said.

At least 570 homes were destroyed or suffered major damage in the tornado and severe storms, according to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency. At least 80 people were injured, two critically. No deaths were reported.

David Dean, a resident of Petal, told the Associated Press that he and his wife were at church when the tornado hit, but his two adult daughters and a future son-in-law were home and survived.

"It's really just kind of sinking in today," said Dean, whose family will be staying with relatives for now. "The first time in 54 years of my life I'm homeless. But God is going to take care of it."

In 2012, World Vision's domestic disaster response team helped more than 47,000 people, including more than 30,000 children. The team responded to tornadoes in Alabama, Missouri, Texas, and Illinois as well as flooding, hurricanes, and wildfires in Oklahoma, New Mexico, and the Gulf Coast.

 

Deploying Supplies to disaster survivors

How Can You Help Now?

Pray for children, families, and communities affected by the recent tornado. Pray that the damage would be minimal and that those impacted by the tornado would find the help they require.

Make a one-time donation to our U.S. Disaster Response Fund. Your gift will help us respond quickly and effectively to life-threatening emergencies right here in the United States, like the recent tornado in Mississippi.

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