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Disaster relief group needs volunteers

Hurricane Katrina taught many of us an important lesson: be prepared for the worst.

A new volunteer organization in the area, the Medical Resource Corps (MRC), is striving to help the community do just that.

&uot;Our DHR (Department of Human Resources) was overwhelmed with people in need after Hurricane Katrina…we want to help relief some of that stress that fell on DHR’s shoulders and help streamline the entire effort of disaster relief,&uot; Debbie Bloodworth, MRC coordinator, said in a recent interview.

Volunteers will serve as task leaders, coordinating relief efforts by area agencies such as FEMA and Red Cross, churches and other groups.

&uot;Everyone will have a specific task set ahead of time and know exactly what their mission is,&uot; Bloodworth said.

&uot;There was some confusion after Katrina about who was serving evacuees meals and where, things like that, and we want to help alleviate that problem.&uot;

As the name implies, MRC is in particular need of retired nurses, doctors, EMTs and pharmacists who would like to volunteer to assist in times of need.

&uot;For nurses who need to get re-accredited, the cost of them doing so will be covered by MRC, so this is quite an incentive for them,&uot; Bloodworth said.

However, those with non-medical background are also more than welcome to volunteer.

&uot;We can use people, for example, who can go and read to evacuees’ children at the shelter, who can play games and put puzzles together with the kids. If people want to help, we can find a place for them,&uot; Bloodworth said.

&uot;At no charge to our volunteers, we will also supply training in first aid and CPR, too.&uot;

An MRC meeting will be held at 10 a.m. Monday, April 3, at the conference room in the old high school, located on School Highlands Road in Greenville.

&uot;The public is invited and we would be delighted to have anyone interested in becoming a volunteer to come and join us next Monday,&uot; Bloodworth said.

For more information, contact Debbie Bloodworth at (334) 782-4008 or 371-0247.

The MRC was made possible through grant monies through the Department of Homeland Security.