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Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania seeks volunteers to help flood victims

| Thursday, July 25, 2013, 12:14 a.m.

A faith-based organization is in need of volunteers so it can help flooding victims.

Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania's goal is to help residents clean, sanitize and repair their homes.

“Whenever there is a disaster, we try to bring volunteers to the same table,” said the Rev. Ronald Green, an organizer.

Green said volunteers' primary responsibility is the cleanup of basements and floors.

“The immediate need is to get people out of the dirt and the mud,” Green said.

Volunteers can be as young as 15.

Jerry Lynn, 70, of Ross has been a Christian Associates volunteer since the organization's formation in 2004.

“Without volunteers, certain areas will never recover,” Lynn said. “What we need are men, women and teens that want to help their neighbors, and don't mind getting a little dirty in the process.”

Christian Associates started after Hurricane Ivan. Once the religious community realized people needed help, it decided to unify to try and solve some of people's problems. Members often walk door-to-door, responding to complaints.

“They don't know how they are going to recover,” Lynn said, “especially when you're in low-income areas or a senior citizen.”

Anyone in need of help can call 211 or 1-888-553-5778.

“We'll send them wherever we know we've had a call for assistance,” Green said.

There is just one exception: “We don't clean up commercial properties,” Green said. “We only deal with residents.”

David Paulk is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5804 or dpaulk@tribweb.com.

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