Students spend spring break helping tornado victims - KMSP-TV

Students spend spring break helping tornado victims

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Volunteers continue to pour into Adairsville to help following a tornado in January. More than 200 homes were damaged in the tornado.

A group of college students from Michigan are among those rolling up their sleeves cleaning-up debris and rebuilding homes.

Rachel Eckert is part of a group of more than a dozen, who boarded a bus on campus at Northern Michigan University Friday and drove 25 hours to come help a town they had only heard of on TV.

"You can hear these people lost their home. You can hear there was all this damage, like hotels and  motels and grocery stores are knocked down...and then you see it, and you're like, ‘oh my gosh,'" Eckert said.

They call it an "alternative spring break," one several students from Berry College in Rome, are also taking.

"We've been moving branches all day. There's another team out rebuilding homes," said Jennifer Fortnash, a Berry College student.

Since the tornado hit more than a month ago, about 10,000 people have volunteered, making a huge impact on the town.

The students are spending a week here at time when most of their classmates are doing a lot less work.

"We know that there's a huge need to help these people that have been devastated by the tornadoes.  We're pretty much their assistance; they're not really receiving it from anywhere else. So we understand it's important for us to come out here and help them," said Rick Rentas, a student at Berry College.

Around the time the Michigan group goes home later this week, another group of college students will be coming from Illinois.

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