PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — A group of Panama City Police officers will be heading south to help with the Hurricane Ian recovery effort.

Six officers, including team leader Lieutenant Billy Carstarphen, will be going to Sanibel Island and Venice Beach.

Hurricane Ian hit Sanibel and Venice Beach head-on back in September. They’ve been closed ever since, but are set to reopen this weekend.

The local officers will be helping with all that will need to be done. Lt. Carstarphen said, “It’s unfortunate that it happened, but with it being close to Christmas time, it kind of gives us a sense that we are giving back and we can bring some Christmas joy to them in light of the bad situation that it may be.”

PCPD agreed it’s a great opportunity to give back, as well as spread some holiday spirit.

The team leaves on the morning of December 8th and is expected to return on December 16th.