hank you for volunteering to be a group leader! As a group leader, you will be the liaison between Camp Victor and your organization. This page is intended to give you all of the information necessary to prepare your group and have the best experience possible. Here are the recommended steps for preparation:
1. As soon as possible, register your group according to the information on the registration page. Registering is the only way that we can be prepared for your group and have work and housing available for you.
2. Advise your group to browse our website, and in particular, our Volunteer Orientation Information. Make a list of questions and concerns that have not been addressed and contact our Volunteer Coordinator to address them.
3. Call a group meeting. At this meeting you should: answer questions from step 2; hand out registration packets ; collect completed registration packets; and mentally prepare your group (see below).
4. No later than 2 weeks before arrival, Make certain we have a registration packet for every member of your group.
5. IMPORTANT NOTES:
We have a little of everything to do around the area and please be aware that everything is not always laid out in advance. We rely on our volunteer force, quite often, to evaluate a job after another crew has left it. We rely on the pass-down of that other crew and often do not get a complete representation of all that remains to be accomplished. Therefore, the next group on the job will most likely do the next assessment, including material lists.
We also rely on the volunteer force to transport the materials required for the job when possible. If it is not possible for the volunteers to carry their own material, we will either provide a vehicle or have someone carry the materials to the job.
Volunteers often want to know how to purchase supplies and materials. If the home owner is providing materials, then it is a minor issue. If we are providing the materials, then we have several accounts and various gift cards available. Each situation is determined by the home owner’s ability to provide materials.
One more concern is tools. Although we have a full array of tools to fit most jobs, we ask that you bring your own tools when possible. When we are at or above capacity, our tools tend to be spread very thin, so hand tools and small power tools come in handy. For larger equipment such as compressors and chop saws we can accommodate those gaps fairly well. If in doubt, don’t hesitate to call to to find out what we have.
If your group has any medical professionals who are interested in working
6. Arrive at Camp Victor on your scheduled date before 6 P.M. You should also have a convenient mode of transporting your group and any necessary tools to and from work sites if applicable. Each group is responsible for its own transportation. While large buses may be a convenient way of getting your group to Mississippi, they are not an efficient way of getting around Mississippi. If you are committed to traveling by bus, please make other arrangements for transportation upon arrival.
7. Group leaders may consider conducting a daily debriefing with their group members to discuss the day’s activities and reflect on the blessings and challenges of the day.
Vehicle Rental Agencies
Agencies offering a 20% discount
Agencies offering a 10% discount Agencies not offering a discount
Nifty Car Rental LLC 228-863-9119 Enterprise Rent-A-Car 228-875-0204 Hertz Rent-A-Car 228-863-2761
Thrifty Rental* 228-864-0762 Budget Car Rental 228-872-1781 National Car Rental 228-863-5548
*(Use promotional code CVLC) A & A Auto Rental 228-604-0025
Skilled Labor – While it is very exciting that we are moving out of the cleanup phase of recovery, reconstruction brings with it many more details and complications. therefore we are asking each group to bring at least 1 skilled volunteer for every 5 unskilled. The skilled volunteer does not need to be a professional, but should be capable of leading/teaching others.
Orientations – Your group will attend a general orientation at 7:30 P.M. on the day of or the day after arrival, depending on the number of new arrivals we have that day.. In addition, any members of your group working on community work crews, or in the distribution center, will attend a separate orientation in the morning of the first work day.
Devotionals – Your group is invited and encouraged to attend our morning and evening prayer sessions. Morning prayers (6:30 A.M.) provide a positive start to each day and are a reminder of why you’re here. Evening prayers (7:00 P.M.) serve as a sort of “debriefing” for the day and offer a chance to share experiences with other volunteers.
Bring Your Shirt – All volunteer groups are welcome to hang a shirt in our parish hall. Many groups have also chosen to autograph their shirt before hanging it up.
Those In Need – Many areas of the Gulf Coast can be deceiving to the eyes. It’s easy to see a big house and assume that the family who lives there is rich and doesn’t need help. It can be very frustrating if you’re asked to help someone who doesn’t appear to need help. However, what if the big house was just purchased by a family running a successful small business which was also destroyed in the hurricane? Having lost their only source of income, the family may not be able afford mortgage payments much less repairs from flood damage.
Our case workers make great efforts to assess each individual situation so that our operation is assisting only those in need, regardless of their situation before Katrina. We help people with big houses, small houses, no houses, and everywhere in between.
Clinics – In addition to bringing skilled volunteers, we recommend that those without trade skills attend a clinic to gain a basic construction knowledge before arrival. Home Depot and Lowe’s offer clinics and videos in areas such as drywall, roofing, flooring, etc. Larger groups may be able to arrange for a clinic in a specific area. Please contact your local Home Depot or Lowe’s for details.
A Servant’s Heart
There is much that goes into the recovery effort here, and all of it is made possible through the hard work of volunteers. Work crews go out every day to help people clean out their homes and prepare for rebuilding. The distribution center is open Monday through Saturday, providing Katrina victims with over $100,000 in food and supplies each week. Our kitchen provides 3 meals a day to hungry volunteers, church staff, and anyone else who cares to eat. In addition, with an average of over 100 volunteers here at any one time, there are many chores that need to be done in order to maintain a clean living space.
Sometimes we have volunteers set up in advance to work every phase of our operations. Many times, however, we need to ask groups to provide volunteers for some of the “behind-the-scenes” work that makes it all possible. We certainly take into consideration your group’s work preferences, but it’s not always possible to put people exactly where they want to be, which is why we ask each volunteer to have a servant’s heart.
If you come with a personal agenda of things that you want to accomplish here there’s a fair chance you’ll leave disappointed. However, if you come here only to serve God and to serve others, you’ll always leave fulfilled.