Saturday, April 9, 2016

Thankful to Catholic Charities for their post-flood recovery efforts in the northern parishes(counties) of Archdiocese of New Orleans

Washington and St. Tammany Parish Flood Update

As of April 8, 2016
We wanted to take this opportunity to update you on the response Catholic Charities (CCANO) has given to the flooding in Washington and St. Tammany Parishes that occurred over the period from March 8th through the 11th.  It is evident that many lives will be affected, and we are committed to serving those made vulnerable by the situation.  As a valued partner and funder, we hope you will take an interest in the developing situation in our area.
Catholic Charities is one of the largest health and human service agencies in the Gulf South. We are a not-for-profit organization comprised of 30 programs and one affiliated ministry.  We are dedicated to serving the poor and vulnerable of our region regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or economic status. We serve the physical area of the Archdiocese of New Orleans, which is made up of the civil parishes of Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard, Plaquemines, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, Washington and St. Tammany. We serve the entire state through our Food for Families/Food for Seniors program.
Since Saturday, March 12th, CCANO has been assessing the situation and has started relief and recovery efforts including providing counselors who have been meeting with evacuees in local area shelters to offer support and case management in hard-hit areas. Our team, along with Archbishop Gregory Aymond and CCANO leadership, has been on the ground coordinating responses at church parishes, working with the Emergency Operations Centers, providing crisis and pastoral counseling, and filling in as needed.
While many Parishes in Louisiana were impacted by the storms, CCANO’s priority areas are St. Tammany and Washington Parishes. We have already identified key partners and sites in each of the parishes in order to establish services such as counseling, case management and food & supply distribution: 
  1. Annunciation Catholic Church in Bogalusa, Louisiana (Washington Parish)
  2. Bogalusa City Government (Washington Parish)
  3. St. Peter Catholic Church (St. Tammany Parish)
As of April 8th, CCANO has provided the following to individuals impacted by the flood:
  • We currently have 96 individuals enrolled in disaster case management. Case management is a collaborative process that assesses, plans, implements, coordinates, monitors, and evaluates the options and services required to meet the client’s health and human service needs.
  • CCANO assisted with the enrollment of 41 individuals for D-SNAP (Disaster Food Assistance). We also offered translation services to 3 additional individuals in need of D-SNAP.
  • CCANO staff gave emotional and spiritual support through face-to-face meetings with 50 families at the Covington High School Red Cross shelter. CCANO also provided shelter support and purchased needed hygiene items.
  • We have offered information and referrals to 384 people.
  • As well, we’ve offered Crisis Counseling to 53 individuals.
  • CCANO staff is providing case management services to 30 employees at Our Lady of the Angels Hospital so they can continue to help patients in need while also receiving help.
  • CCANO has also received 37 referrals in St. Tammany and Washington Parishes from state and local government agencies and churches for crisis counseling and emergency assistance of critical cases as well as assistance for first responders with a complete loss. New cases are being identified daily through outreach and canvasing.
  • CCANO held its first volunteer clean-up day on Saturday, March 19th. Thirteen volunteers met at Bogalusa Senior Center and cleaned three homes.
  • CCANO has also assisted with the distribution of items including 24 boxes (5 Hygiene kits per box totaling 120 Hygiene kits distributed) and 56 Cleaning kits. In total, 8 pallets of items were distributed.
    • At this time, CCANO has conducted 37 home damage assessments and provided 181 individuals with information and referrals.
    • The Davis Landing neighborhood in Slidell was identified as high-need for additional assistance since they had a high percentage of individuals without insurance.
    • In collaboration with Second Harvest, CCANO’s Food for Families/Food for Seniors program delivered 910 ready-made meals and 300 soda cracker boxes.
  • 3 Crisis Counselors are or have been providing counseling at:
    • Annunciation Catholic Church in Bogalusa, Louisiana (Washington Parish)
    • Bogalusa City Government (Washington Parish)
    • St. Peter Catholic Church (St. Tammany Parish)
    • Covington Red Cross Shelter (St. Tammany Parish)
We have been collaborating with: Second Harvest, FF/FS, YMCA, Good Samaritans Ministry, Epworth Project (Volunteer program that offers home repairs), YMCA, ARC-YMCA (Other), United Way SELA, United Way Washington, Bogalusa Mayor and employees, St. Luke, Sts. Peter and Paul, St. Ben’s, Red Cross, FEMA, Southern Baptist Disaster Response and Our Lady of the Angels Hospital.
Due to the magnitude of the disaster, long-term counseling, case management, and rebuilding assistance are anticipated. CCANO is projecting needs for housing clean up and volunteer labor, additional food delivery and extra food assistance to low income seniors. As the water recedes and the assessments continue over the next several days, CCANO will assist with case management to help them in accessing support through FEMA, D-SNAP, and other federal and state programs.

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