Thousands of volunteers help Laplace families with hurricane cleanup

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POSTED: Tuesday, March 12, 2013 - 6:30pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 12:03pm

More than 2,100 volunteers are in Laplace this week helping out victims of Hurricane Isaac. Homeowners are still trying to pick up the pieces after the storm. The group 8 Days of Hope is leading the cleanup.

"I mean without God we wouldn't be able to do this. He's definitely using the 8 Days of Hope to bring smiles back to our lives and bring us back inside our homes," Nina Santa Marina, Laplace homeowner, explained.

The area flooded during Hurricane Isaac.

"It's just been the biggest blessing that you can ever see. I'm telling you," Jean Martin, Laplace homeowner, described the 8 Days of Hope workers.

Steve Tybor, founder of 8 Days of Hope explained the meaning of the groups name: "The number 8 in the Bible means new beginnings, so we go to a disaster area for 8 days. We start on a Saturday and we go to a Saturday. "

The group gutted homes. They patched roofs, and volunteers cleaned up.

"We are still doing demo work. There are still actually some homes that are still in the same condition as August after Hurricane Isaac hit," Tybor described.

A lot of home owners didn't have the resources to repair their homes.

"It was heart breaking, I didn't cry or anything," Martin said. "But, it was heartbreaking because I was by myself."

Santa Marina, said without the groups help: "It would pretty much still be sitting. Waiting for you know some support of some type to come in and help us."

The volunteers helped around 160 families donating hours of free labor on Tuesday.

"Most are more speechless than anything else. They don't really know what to say or how to express that. We're not here for that anyway," Jed Davis, volunteer, said.

"That's so beautiful. They are the sweetest kids that you ever want to find. That's like angels that just came. I'm telling you," Martin exclaimed.

The group will continue working through Saturday. Their goal is to help 300 Laplace families recover.

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