Arlington County Board Members Jay Fisette and Barbara Favola recently joined a team of volunteers from Arlington County that is helping rebuild hurricane-damaged homes in Biloxi, Miss. Seventeen Arlington residents are participating in the effort, Arlington's latest initiative to help Biloxi recover from the devastating hurricanes that hit the Gulf Coast last year.
With this year's hurricane season just days away, the rebuilding effort has taken on a new sense of urgency all along the Gulf Coast. In Biloxi, the Arlington team has joined forces with an army of volunteers from across the nation. Arlington County is working in partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia in hard-hit East Biloxi.
Arlington began helping the Gulf Coast shortly after Hurricane Katrina made landfall last August. The County deployed first responders to help storm victims, and Arlington County churches and community organizations took in more than 240 evacuees who were left homeless by the storm. The Arlington Response to Katrina Task Force has taken a variety of steps since then to help in the massive effort to rebuild the Gulf Coast. Volunteers from Arlington and Northern Virginia already have helped repair 30 homes in Biloxi, and will complete several more during the current effort.
Fisette and Favola have stressed that the County's commitment to the Gulf Coast is ongoing. The two will be in Biloxi through June 2 and can be reached for interviews by cell phone at: 703-228-1762.