Mozambique relief meeting coming Monday to Empire School

At least 35 Carson City residents will find out Monday night how much they want to join adventure traveler Gordon Hunsucker on a disaster relief expedition to Mozambique.

Hunsucker, a 1975 Carson High School graduate, will spell out the details of a two-week relief effort to the southeast African nation at 6 p.m. Monday at the library at Empire Elementary School, 1260 Monte Rosa Drive in Carson City.

The tentative departure dates for Hunsucker's team are March 19 or 20 with return to Northern Nevada slated for April 2 or 3. Anybody wishing to join the team must sign up - either by attending the meeting or calling Hunsucker at (888) 782-4991 - by Monday.

"We will be setting up health clinics, distributing food and doing rescue work if need," said Hunsucker, owner of Adventure Quest, a Reno-based adventure travel firm. "What people have to understand is that no matter what the weather conditions are we're going to be in the middle of it."

Mozambique was struck by the worst flooding in the country's history in early February. Late last week, the remnants of a second cyclone brought more heavy rain to this former Portuguese colony.

Hunsucker said 35 Carson City residents have called him in the past week saying they want to join him. Some answered his challenge for 1975 classmates to come along.

Hunsucker's team will also include volunteers from Reno as well as several from the East Coast. Some doctors in South Africa have also committed to joining Hunsucker's team once it arrives in Johannesburg.

The local team Hunsucker ultimately assembles will fly out of Reno with stopovers either in New York or Atlanta before heading to London and then to Johannesburg.

Hunsucker said the Monday meeting at Empire School is not limited to volunteers who can travel to Mozambique. Anybody wishing to donate money or supplies may also stop by.

Local donations have included solar powered industrial strength water filters from Aqua Sun in Gardnerville. Hunsucker would welcome donations of tents, light fleece sleeping bags, backpacks and first aid kits.

Hunsucker said Friday he has raised $25,000, but he was confident he would reach his goal of $110,000 by the time the team leaves.

"That buys airfare, food for the team and to distribute, gear we need and it allow us to purchase medicine when we get to South Africa," Hunsucker said.

He has a commitment from a South African airlines for the Atlantic portion of the trip, but Hunsucker would rather see a Northern Nevadan with a cargo plane step forward for the entire trip.

Anybody traveling with Hunsucker needs to have current shots for hepatitis A, tetanus and typhoid with a recommendation for a cholera shots. Team members must also have malaria pills, which must be begun a week prior to arrival in a malaria zone.


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