Gulfport, MS - Habitat for Humanity (Post 1)

Today was our first day of service here in Gulfport, Mississippi. After traveling for 3 short days we finally arrived here in the gulf at our wonderful condominium.  Last night we decided to stuff all 12 of our bodies into one room to sleep, which was so fun, except for the fact that we found out that our dear friend Frank Robert Dawson III snores like a hippo. After a good nights rest, we woke up with a sprung in our step, no really some of our participants decided to go for a run. To start out our day we went to Gulf Coast Community Ministries, which is a local all in one stop resource for citizens in need. They have a food pantry, walk-in free clinic, and even a clothes closet. This operation is truly amazing, seeing as back in Columbia locals would have to drive across town three times to get to a clinic, a Goodwill, and a food bank. Here in Gulfport, those in need can come here for daily essentials and medical help.

Throughout the day we focused on serving the center rather than helping them. To us this means asking what we can do for them as a service and completing the task at hand to the best of our ability. We broke up into teams and worked on a variety of tasks including lawn work, cleaning, sorting food, and vacuuming. After all of this was done we worked as a large group to reorganize the shed in the back. We finished all this work in about 4 hours, which was surprising to me because there was so much to do. We learned quickly that twelve people can finish a lot more daunting tasks than three people can, and that working as a team can get a task done faster. Later in the day we went to our Habitat for Humanity orientation. At the meeting our Habitat leader, Angela, talked about the devastating damage that Hurricane Katrina left behind, and as driving through Gulfport, you can see it. Empty lots scatter the coast with remains of foundations of houses, and it put into perspective why we are all here, to serve the community. Today was an extremely rewarding experience to serve the staff of the Gulf Coast Community Ministries, and we are so excited to start working at our Habitat site tomorrow.

Peace, love, and Missitrippy

Kelsey and Aly

Our first group picture, in a tree at the University of Mississippi

Us in front of Habitat for Humanity of the Mississippi Gulf Coast

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