Sharing Pearlington

A subsidiary Blog of our Main Blog, located at and presenting words and images of Pearlington. Sharing the series: "Focus On..." * "Back Home Again" * "A Volunteer's Tale" and other human interest stories.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A Volunteer's Tale - Corrie Ayers

"Let the Children Come. . . ."

I was thrilled to read the article by Jennifer Johnson regarding the children that have been away from Pearlington for this past year. It helped put some perspective on a recent trip that my family made to Pearlington.

My husband and I took seven kids in March, ranging in age from 6- 14. We had been given counsel and received much information as to why we shouldn’t take kids, especially the two youngest - ages six and seven - to the Gulf Coast. My husband was adamant that we go as a family. I was struggling with taking our youngest child because of her special needs. She was born with bilateral clubfeet, which have now been corrected, and she also has hands and arms that do not function normally. She tires easily and can be difficult to deal with. I could not see any thing that she could do in Pearlington and I did not want to look after her for a week – I could do that at home.

We did go down to help out a family, but they had made much progress on their house and did not need a lot of assistance. Since we were not tied to a particular project, we were "on call" for projects that came up. The folks at Pearl*Mart and the Recovery Center were wonderful. Laurie, Larry and Charlie always come up with projects for us to do. The kids worked hard, tackled every project with gusto and did all their work well. They kids earned a reputation of being good workers, doing work without complaining and doing all with joy!

I got to know folks at the Recovery Center, Project Recovery and others fairly well. The Project Recovery office was right next to where we were sleeping in the school. Every one just smiled at Giovanna, my 6 year old daughter. She did what she does best – walks into a room and lights it up with her smile. She gave lots of hugs and became everyone’s friend.

What did not become evident to me, until the last day that we were there, was the effect that having seven kids in the town did for the spirits of the people of Pearlington. As we were getting ready to leave, I was asked two questions – "How was your time here?" Once they found out we loved it and wanted to come back, the follow up question was always, "Will you bring the kids with you?" The kids brought laughter, joy and fun to a community that has been under stress since Katrina hit. They ministered to the folks by just being there. It took some courage to take kids into this disaster area, but it was well worth it to see the smiles and joy it brought to the residents.

Submitted by Corrie Ayers, MN


  • At 4:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I spent a lot of time with Carrie and Giovanni and I can testify to the blessing she and her whole family were to us all. Her husband and older children "built" the wooden floor in the cooking area of Pearl's Cafe. They were all such a blessing to us....aside from all the work they did. Giovanni just lighted up every room she walked into. Thank you for sharing their story.
    MaryLena Anderegg


Post a Comment

<< Home