Update from the Lower 9th Ward
News from the Staff
We wanted to update you on the Lower 9th Ward in the wake of Hurricane Ida. First of all, all our staff and Board members are safe and none of our homes had more than minor damage. Ms. Cynthia is still in the neighborhood and reports that most of the homes do not appear to have severe damage, though some have windows broken and significant roof damage. Most importantly, the levees around the entire city held and the physical damage is nothing like what we saw after Katrina.
Even so, the lack of power is creating huge challenges, with people in immediate need of food, water, air conditioning, and charging stations. The city has set up a cooling center right outside our neighborhood where people can receive all these services. In addition, our partners, lowernine.org and New Philippians Baptist Church, are working with Second Harvest food bank and Jose Andres’s World Central Kitchen to distribute food to the Lower 9th Ward from the church where our office is located.
Our role, as it was during COVID, will be to keep in close touch with residents and make sure they receive whatever help they need. We are already working closely with the Lower 9th Ward Neighborhood Association to ensure our neighbors have the vital information and resources they need.
We anticipate that recovery programs will be established in the coming days and weeks. We will make sure our neighbors know about them and help them apply, beginning with FEMA applications. By bringing all of these resources to our community, family by family, we are able to maximize our impact.
We would be grateful for your donation to support our work at this time of great need. Your donation can be made here: www.L9WHA.org/donate.
And here are two other organizations, one in our community and one in an area that was the most impacted by Ida, that need your support:
lowernine.org has been working in the Lower 9th Ward since a few months after Hurricane Katrina, continuing to rebuild homes. In addition to setting up food distributions right now, soon they will begin making repairs to homes that have been damaged. They are a crucial lifeline for our community.
Houma was one of the areas hit hardest by Hurricane Ida, and it is home to a strong but precarious native community. The storm caused extensive damage to the roof of the United Houma Nation’s administration building. Even as the building needs repairs, it is being used as a staging area for relief efforts in the coastal tribal communities. The tribe is in desperate need of tarps to distribute to residents and building supplies such as lumber and nails to help restore and rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Ida.
Thank you for all the love and prayers and support you have shown for
our beloved community.