BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — Members of one Brevard County church are continuing to show their support for victims of Hurricane Michael by practicing what they preach.

  • Brevard LDS Church members pitch in for Michael cleanup
  • Church's crews have logged 176,000 volunteer hours so far
  • About 50 from Brevard headed back to Panhandle this weekend

"He told us to love our neighbors as ourselves, so we think it's the least we can do to send some teams up there to help people who are in such dire need," says Kevin Smith, Stake President for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in the Brevard County area. The church has locations in Melbourne, Palm Bay and Rockledge.

They call it "Helping Hands." 

Since Hurricane Michael ravaged the Florida Panhandle a month ago, Smith and more than 11,000 church members from around the Southeast have gone there to pitch in.

"They didn't know how to get out of it, and having a crew of 30 people show up with chainsaws and people to carry stuff off was just a real blessing to them," Smith says.

The church's crews have logged 176,000 hours of volunteer time so far, and they say more than 7,000 Panhandle families have been helped.

This coming weekend, more church members are going back — about 50 from the Space Coast.

Knowing many people have come to lend a hand when hurricanes ravaged here, "we can return the favor, going up there and helping where they've been struck," Smith says.

He said they expect to make two more trips to the Panhandle.