Those of us who showed up were handed a copy of the application form for Katrina relief, and asked to think about volunteering for it. This would be paid work for us and the office would be reimbursed for our salaries (thus the attraction for Ed). But it's unclear what we'd actually do, other than the application asks if you can live without refrigeration for meds, can work long hours without air conditioning, etc.
One person called to ask, and was told that volunteers needed to be in Beaumont, Texas next Monday, and the work would be "C&A" (he didn't find out what that is), going door-to-door, and ensuring that the government was not being overcharged. (I can't put these pieces together into a sensible work task, but the message could well have been garbled multiple times...) And that work shifts would be 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, for the duration of the detail appointment. USGS is looking for 68 additional volunteers for this, having gotten 33 on their first appeal.
I took the application, thought about it, and filed it in my recycle box. Even if I were interested and thought I had useful skills for the work, I have tasks with deadlines under the funding I do have that will keep me busy through November, at least.