Community comes together to help Adairsville storm victims - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Community comes together to help Adairsville storm victims

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ADAIRSVILLE, Ga. -

Churches and neighbors are stepping in to help storm victims in Adairsville after FEMA has stated that it won't provide aid.

A shelter for abused teens has become a much needed temporary home for the Riobe family, who lost everything when the tornado hit.

"We don't have family here so we just thank God that they opened up their home," said Andrea Riobe.

Viewer photos: Tornadoes, severe storms in Georgia

The Downing Clark Hope Center is between groups of residents so they welcomed in storm victims and volunteers.

"This is someone who don't even know us from A to Z…and for her to just reach deep, deep within herself --  that's how you know the true love of God," said Ralph Riobe.

The Adairsville Church of God is filled with families needing help.

"People started coming with equipment, ability, talent and they just stepped up," said Ken Coomer of Bartow Christian Disaster Relief.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said that the area won't be declared a federal disaster area because less than 600 uninsured buildings were damaged and there was less than $13 million of damage to public roads and utilities.

"For there to be a FEMA major disaster declaration, the state of Georgia and the communities impacted would have had to sustain much higher degree of damage," said Ken Davis of Georgia Emergency Management Agency.

GEMA has asked for help from the Small Business Administration, which would provide low interest loans for homeowners and businesses to rebuild. Until then, the Adairsville community is committed to helping their own.

"Of course FEMA and GEMA didn't come in, but that's OK.  We kind of came, as a community, came together to make it better for everybody," said Andrea Riobe.

More than 1,600 volunteers descended on Adairsville last weekend, doing everything from clearing brush to helping people rebuild their homes.

The Red Cross has set up a call center to help find people a place to sleep. They are open between 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. and can be reached at 404-870-4440.

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