Volunteer group offers cleanup help

Sep. 13—VALDOSTA — Two weeks after Hurricane Idalia charged ashore in Florida with its sights set on Valdosta, cleanup in and around the Azalea City continues.

One of the many volunteer service groups offering help to Lowndes County citizens with fallen trees and cleanup duties was Inspiritus, a faith-based disaster aid organization.

The group, which is affiliated with the Lutheran church, is based in Atlanta, said Sherry Buresh, executive director of disaster relief for Inspiritus.

Locally, the group's volunteers are being hosted by the First Nazarene Church of Valdosta.

Inspiritus has about 30 people plus local volunteers at work in Valdosta, she said. Generally, the group's own staff cut down the trees while volunteers drag them into position for pickup, Buresh said.

"We coordinate with (the Lowndes County Emergency Management Agency)," she said.

About 20 volunteer organizations are helping with trees and cleanup in the county, Buresh said.

In addition, Inspiritus helps with a donation center set up at 2300 N. Ashley St. Buresh said gift cards to various stores are the best sort of donation, because they help local businesses and make it easier for people to buy precisely what they need.

Those wishing to donate goods were advised to offer paper products, she said, including diapers, personal care goods and garbage bags, as sell as rakes and shovels, she said.

Terry Richards is the senior reporter for The Valdosta Daily Times.