Good neighbors: River City Rescue Mission thankful for local storm donations; still in need of support

Published 9:51 am Monday, February 12, 2024

When River City Rescue Mission Executive Director Earnie Hall put out the call to the community in January that the mission would serve as a cold-weather shelter during the winter storm, businesses and individuals alike responded with donations – including Diane Derivaux Kemp’s State Farm Insurance Agency.

Kemp’s team sprang into action, collecting a care package of needed items for donation, including blankets, hats, gloves, scarves, and clothes baskets to help during the time of need.

Kemp, a second-generation – and 18-year veteran – State Farm agent, said her team is committed to being “State Farm good neighbors,” adding that those efforts include providing aid to organizations like the mission and its Blossom Project, which supports women in need.

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Hall said this week that those donations made a huge difference for the people the mission provided shelter for during the storm, but the need for support didn’t end when the weather passed. The mission, which operates a thrift store on Washington Street, also serves as a shelter for men in Vicksburg – as well as a kitchen feeding men, women, and children alike and providing food for shut-ins.

“We’re still here,” Hall said. “We’re still in need (of donations). We have 42 men here right now. It isn’t just during the storm.”

Hall said donations like those from Kemp’s team were invaluable during January’s storm and also make a big difference on a daily basis at the mission.

Kemp said she reached out to a good friend and RCRM board member and discovered the challenge Hall and the mission were facing in January.

“We thrive on being a local office with local team members who support all our local community,” Kemp said. “Local is a key word. Our office was proud to step up and support the Blossom Project for women in need.”

But the support Kemp’s agency provides to the community doesn’t stop at its donations to the mission. Kemp can be found all over the community being a good neighbor and is active in many different roles in the town she says she is proud to call home.

In 2023, Kemp was voted Vicksburg’s “Best Insurance Agent” and her overall team selected as “Best Insurance Agency.” Kemp and her team were also at the top of those lists in 2022, an example of their dedication to the community.

And Kemp says it is her team and her family that are the real keys to that sustained success in Vicksburg. Kemp said her hus-
band, William Kemp, daughter, Caroline Kemp, and twin sons, Carter and Wailes Kemp have all supported her and her agency since day one. Kemp also said without her team at State Farm, she couldn’t do what she does, adding she depends on “her heroes” every day.

Kemp’s State Farm Insurance Agency is located at 1221 Clay Street in Vicksburg and can be reached by phone at 601-636-0553 or online at dianekemp.com.

The River City Rescue Mission is located at 3705 Washington Street and can be reached by phone at 601- 636-6602 or online at rivercityrescuemission.org.