April 16, 2008
Orientation Morning 1
March 17, 2008
Louisiana United Methodist Disaster Recovery Ministry is a nonprofit agency that is helping clients rebuild their homes and their lives. Working out of Aldersgate United Methodist Church in Slidell, the organization’s mission is to “Stay in St. Tammany until everyone who needs help because of Hurricane Katrina has received it."
On Monday mornings, new groups of approximately 250 volunteers, mostly from the United States and Canada, arrive for orientation and work assignments.
During orientation, we learned that Slidell, Louisiana is considered to be 85% recovered from the damage inflicted by Hurricane Katrina. It is estimated that more than 90% of the reconstruction in the area has been done by volunteer labor.
Why is the recovery rate in Slidell so much higher than New Orleans, which is presently considered to be somewhere between 5% - 8% recovered? Concentrating on areas further inland, the logical idea was to repair lesser damaged areas to serve as base for other more severely damaged areas.
It’s similar to what occurs when a real wound begins to heal. Supplied with the necessary elements, and a healthy environment, the outer, less damaged edges of the skin begin to slowly repair themselves. As repair and regeneration occurs, the area of the wound decreases. The repaired areas are now better able to support the veins and capillaries of the growing skin.
And, it seems to be working. Slidell is an active, working community. As businesses have been reestablished, the economic income and populations have been restored. As the population is restored, more businesses and schools are returning. It’s quite a cycle. Much like skin repair, you won’t necessarily be able to see it as it happens, but we’ve already been able to look back and see how far we’ve all come.
Posted by jaselin at April 16, 2008 06:56 AM