Published in our 2017 Annual Report.
On February 7, 2017, an EF-3 tornado devastated New Orleans East. Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans (CCANO) was on the ground later that same day offering counseling, helping to distribute food in collaboration with Second Harvest Food Bank and helping those affected begin their journey to recovery.
In the six weeks that followed, Catholic Charities case managers conducted intake and assessments for more than 400 individuals and families. This process involves documenting the unmet needs of each client, which allows them to be prioritized by the severity of their needs and level of vulnerability.
Additionally, CCANO housed and provided intensive case management to more than 30 individuals whose homes were uninhabitable due to the storm’s damage. All of these individuals were elderly, disabled or families with young children. Catholic Charities also offered 1,190 hours of disaster case management and facilitated 80 hours of volunteer labor.
Catholic Charities is now functioning as part of a cooperative body of nonprofits, faith based and community organizations and government agencies making up the Long-Term Recovery Group (LTRG). The group’s ultimate goal is to provide permanent disaster-resistant housing to replace those destroyed and re-establish a healthy, functioning and self-sustained community.
CCANO’s role will be to continue providing disaster case management for individuals and families affected by the tornado whose needs have not yet been met through the usual recovery process.
Four months after the storm, Catholic Charities held a Peace Prayer Walk through Resurrection of Our Lord Parish, which sits in the heart of the tornado-ravaged neighborhood and has served as a makeshift headquarters for recovery efforts. The walk brought community members and neighbors together to promote peace and celebrate the progress they’ve made in returning their homes and neighborhoods to the way they once were.
On the six month anniversary, the Long-Term Recovery Group held a recourse fair at Resurrection of Our Lord Catholic Church. The fair offered school supplies for children and families and allowed community members with unmet needs to better understand the resources available to them.
Thank you to all who supported our recovery efforts! In addition to those who volunteered their time, we received over $149,500 in donations and grants to help us bring aid and relief to those affected by the tornado. With your support, we have helped, and will continue to help, hundreds in our community.