Stories from the Gulf: Kathlene’s Testimony

Thursday, August 26, 2010

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Almost two years following Hurricane Katrina, Mississippi resident Kathlene Meier says she was still trying to rebuild her home pay check by pay check with only the help of her family, a process she expected would take many more years.

Imagine her relief when a knock on her door one day from a surprise visitor from The Salvation Army led to them receiving all the supplies they needed to complete their house. Kathlene shares the details of her story in the video above.

Kathlene is one of many people who found help rebuilding her home through The Salvation Army. We opened 84,000 cases helping 350,000 people with 84,000 with repair, rebuilding, furnishings and supplies.

Read more in our Katrina 5 Year Report about how The Salvation Army provided relief to the Gulf Coast following Hurricane Katrina and continues to strengthen communities.

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EnviRenew – Helping New Orleans Progress from ‘Recovery’ to ‘Resiliency’

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hurricane Katrina displaced almost all of the New Orleans population when it slammed the Gulf Coast five years ago. Studies show that only about half of the population had returned a year later, increasing to two-thirds by fall of 2007.

While living in southeast Texas, I was surprised by how many people I met during the year following Hurricane Katrina who were hurricane evacuees still waiting to return home. They said they either had no where left to go or the conditions just weren’t liveable. Some said they decided to not go back at all. These conversations made me realize that restoring New Orleans was more than just cleaning up debris and reconstructing buildings. The heart and soul of the ‘Big Easy’ was its residents, but its residents were finding it very difficult to be able to return and thrive back home.

The Salvation Army of New Orleans recognized this problem and launched EnviRenew, a strategy to renew communities through continued Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts. Envirenew began in 2006 and continues to find innovative ways to strengthen New Orleans.

[EnviRenew Home]
Pictured is an affordable, energy efficient home built through EnviRenew. These units are helping revive New Orleans communities, and they’re also designed to withstand strong weather.

The initiative really is amazing. They’ve awarded $10 million in grants to help rebuild 5 New Orleans neighborhoods. They’re constructing affordable, green homes for those in need, improving quality of life and breaking down the high cost barriers that prevent most of these people from being able to return and rebuild. They’re also attracting teachers and first responders to the neighborhoods to make them even stronger. The whole approach is making a positive difference and has even gained expert support.

The interior of an EnviRenew home.

Even 5 years after Hurricane Katrina, The Salvation Army remains committed to help New Orleans progress from a “recovering” city to a “resilient” city. This week you can even have an opportunity to be a part of this!

This Thursday, August 26, The Salvation Army will host a co-sponsored event with FedEx called “The Resiliency Summit.” New Orleans leaders along with national and local experts will celebrate the progress made over the past 5 years and discuss what it will take to create a vibrant and sustainable future for New Orleans communities. This event is free and open to the public, but you have to sign up beforehand! Register here.

Stay tuned to our blog, Facebook, and Twitter pages for updates on this exciting event. For more information on Envirenew, visit their website at www.envirenew.org.

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Happy Earth Day!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

As we recognize Earth Day’s 40th anniversary, we want to share with you a few ways The Salvation Army strives to be responsible stewards of our environment and…

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EnviRenew Awards $10 Million Toward New Orleans Green Home Projects

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Salvation Army will announce today $10 Million in EviRenew Recovery Grants for 5 New Orleans neighborhoods. 125 Grants of $75,000 will be awarded to assist these deserving areas in developing Green Home sustainability projects.

EnviRenew is a Salvation Army initiative focused on making home-ownership costs more affordable through comprehensive green building standards and is a part of The Salvation Army’s ongoing recovery efforts in New Orleans. Energy efficient housing lowers owner’s expenses, enabling low and fixed income households to put aside more money towards savings and helps them achieve a better quality of life.

Working side by side with neighborhood associations, rebuilding agents, and community members themselves, Envirenew will establish replicable, sustainable standards for the area’s revitalization efforts.

EnviRenew’s four programs include:

· Grants for the new construction of 125 affordable, sustainable homes and homeownership grants for community-capacity builders (i.e. teachers and first responders)

· 125 home rehabilitations

· 250 $500 Green Home Sustainability Packages (home weatherization)

· EnviRenew Home Solar Program

“Kicking off EnviRenew is a great way to celebrate Easter by giving continued hope to those waiting to return home after a long journey of despair,” stated Captain Ethan Frizzell of The Salvation Army in Greater New Orleans.

Members of the community are invited to attend this exciting event! Details are below:

What: EnviRenew Recovery and Renewal Grants Announcement

Where: The Salvation Army Greater New Orleans Area Command

4526 S. Claiborne Avenue

New Orleans, LA 70125

When: 2:00 P.M.

April 1, 2010

Why: To announce the five Greater New Orleans neighborhoods that will receive 125, $75,000 for community capacity and funding for additional Green Home sustainability projects.

Guests: Capt. Ethan Frizzell, Area Commander, The Salvation Army of Greater New Orleans

For more information about The Salvation Army of Greater New Orleans, visit their website here.

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