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MartyFan
02-21-2006, 06:05 PM
Hey gang!

I want to clarify that this is not a political message that bashes one side while embracing another. This is about asking fellow citizens to please take action on behalf of those who at this point cannot.

I don't often find myself watching Oprah. Today I did and I have to say I am OUTRAGED by what I have seen of her report about the continuing impact of Katrina in Mississippi and Lousiana.

Oprah was joined by Anderson Cooper and a young Asian-American lady who is a reporter that I am not familiar with.

During the show they shared information on FEMA trailers that are sitting in fields of mud while families within a couple of miles of these trailers are living in what looks to be military issue tents surrounded again by mud, gnats and other bugs...of course many of these folks are going to HAVE to leave the tents in the middle of March.

Folks, this is an outrage!

GOP/DNC I could not care less, our government needs to do what needs to be done to help these people...the trailers in storage in the field of mud are already paid for and sitting there EMPTY..why are we not getting these to people?

I am asking you to join me in contacting your Senators and Congressional Representatives to petition on behlaf of our fellow Ameircans who are forced to live in these conditions (through no fault or cause of their own) with no hope of any change anytime soon...PLEASE!!! Out of compassion out of humanity...out of what is right and just for these people, PLEASE contact your Senators and Congressional Representatives and ask them to take whatever means necessary to get the tools and resources available to these folks to provide them relief.

Additionally, here are two names I received to contact at FEMA from my Senators office. These folks are people who can help move these trailers from the storage lots to the folks who need them.

Gay Ruby
Disaster Assistant Employee
FEMA Region V
gay.ruby@dhs.gov
312-408-5569

or

Jean Baker
External Affairs Officer
FEMA Region V
jean.baker@dhs.gov
312-408-5515

TeamCasey
02-21-2006, 06:16 PM
Thanks for posting this. I also watched it. I kept asking myself, "But what can I do?" I haven't forgotten, but don't know how to help.

RFS62
02-21-2006, 06:44 PM
FEMA makes the post office look like Delta Force.

MartyFan
02-21-2006, 06:54 PM
Sad but true...

What you can do is contact your Senators...I received this advice directly from Senator DeWine and Voinovich offices.

RFS62
02-21-2006, 07:07 PM
This is how many people are still living there.

Caseyfan21
02-21-2006, 07:26 PM
I'm planning on going down there over spring break in a few weeks for the second time to help out.

I went to the Mobile area the last time. While it was nowhere near as bad as the New Orleans and Biloxi area, it was still hit hard near the coast. It was a very rewarding trip and really opened my eyes to the destruction that must have gone on even closer to the real heart of the storm. The most amazing thing, at least in Mobile, was the hearts of some of the people helping out. Really great people volunteering lots of time.

This trip for spring break will be right in the heart of the problems in New Orleans. It should be a real eye opener as we will be staying in tented communities like many of the survivors are. I am really looking forward to helping out but I fear some of the problems that will still be going on down there. I can't even begin to imagine some of the people I will no doubt meet helping out.

TeamCasey
02-21-2006, 08:47 PM
How did you get hooked up to do that? Did you go through the Red Cross or do it on your own?

TeamMorris
02-21-2006, 09:06 PM
I watched also. I feel bad I couldn't help in a huge way but I did best I could. I sell a lot on ebay and for about 2 months I donated a % of my sales to Katrina (Red Cross). It did add up and I feel pretty good about what i was able to do to help:)

Caseyfan21
02-21-2006, 10:16 PM
How did you get hooked up to do that? Did you go through the Red Cross or do it on your own?

I actually am volunteering through my church group here at OSU. We went through the Presbyterian Disaster Relief organization (our group is a Presbyterian group). They basically take groups of people and assign them to places. I believe you can request a certain place as we did for spring break.

If you are interested in just going down on your own, I'm sure you can. In Mobile we were farmed out from the Presb. Disaster Relief group over to Habitat for Humanity. We built a home for a woman and her children that lost their home during the storm. At the house where we worked people would literally fall out of the sky to come in and help. There was one man that drove by himself all the way from Washington state, said he spread it out and went through the southwest avoiding snow and drove for two weeks. He said he was retired and just felt called to come down and help out...just people with amazing stories like that. There was 2 sisters that did the same thing and drove from Boston and dropped in and got assigned to our site. The really amazing one was a man that came in for one day at our site. He looked straight off of his motorcycle, lots of tatoos, that sort of look. I was talking to him and he said he led a bad life up until a couple years ago and he was hit by a train and thrown 200 yards. He said when he was laying on the ground he prayed and said if he could walk in two weeks he would devote his life to God and community service. He said he defied the doctor's predictions and left the rehab place, walking out on his own, exactly two weeks later. He said ever since then he has spent his time, as much as possible, volunteering and helping out.

I'm sure if you wanted to go down and help you could contact Habitat and they could give you help getting to a site. It is really worth any amount of time you can give, the people and the experiences are something I will remember for the rest of my life.

MartyFan
02-22-2006, 12:14 AM
Folks if I can suggest something...PLEASE contact the people at FEMA in my original post and your Senators and Congressional Reps....at this point these people don't really need money but they need the access to the resources that are already in place.

Like many of you who went down to Louisiana and Mississippi and did what you could or made financial donations to the cause. I continue to donate a portion of every booking I get and will until these folks are back to "normal"...or at least the "new normal".

So Fantastic for everything that has been done, there is still much more WE MUST do from where we are to make sure these people are not left behind.

The effort needs to be made to contact your Senators and Congressional Reps. so that they will know this is important to ALL AMERICANS not only the Americans who live in the shell of what was one of the poorest areas of the country.

MartyFan
02-23-2006, 04:29 PM
Hey gang, I wanted to follow up with some of the info on where you can place calls, send emails and faxes so that our fellow Americans get the help they need and deserve in the continuing recovery after Katrina.


This info comes from FEMA regarding their housing resources available to folks.

WHICH EVACUEES ARE ENTITLED TO FEMA HOUSING ASSISTANCE?

No matter where a hurricane evacuee is currently living, they may be eligible for FEMA longer-term housing assistance and must call FEMA immediately to register if they have not already done so at 800-621-FEMA (3362) (TTY: 1-800-462-7585).

Rental Assistance: The predominant form of longer-term housing assistance available from FEMA to hurricane evacuees is rental assistance. Most eligible evacuees who registered with FEMA have already received an initial payment of $2,358 per household, intended to pay rent costs for an apartment or home for three months, and can be adjusted to the appropriate fair market rent. Evacuees may be eligible to receive this aid for up to 18 months after the disaster declaration and are recertified by FEMA in three-month increments.

Housing Locator: Working with federal partners, FEMA refers hurricane evacuees who receive FEMA housing assistance to federal housing options that have been made available by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Housing Development and Fannie Mae. Evacuees looking for more information on these and other rentals available in the Gulf Coast region and throughout the United States can call FEMA’s Housing Locator hotline at 800-762-8740 (TTY: 800-462-7585) or go online to the Disaster Housing Resource at www.dhronline.org

HUD Assistance: Hurricane evacuees not eligible for FEMA housing assistance because they were not homeowners or renters before Hurricanes Katrina or Rita may be eligible for the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Disaster Voucher Program (DVP). Call FEMA’s 1-800-621-FEMA (TTY: 800-462-7585) for a referral.


WHAT ABOUT OTHER ITEMS OUTSIDE OF HOUSING?

Partnering: FEMA continues to partner with state and local governments, voluntary agencies, faith-based organizations and recovery coalitions to assist with the needs that cannot be met through federal agency programs.

FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates mitigation activities, works with state and local emergency managers, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.

WHERE TO GO FOR MORE INFO OR TO CONTACT FEMA.

You may visit the FEMA Web site at www.fema.gov, for updated response and recovery information.

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Jean Baker, External Affairs Officer, FEMA Region V, at (312) 408-5515, e-mail jean.baker@dhs.gov or fax (312) 408-5361.


Folks these people have been good enough to share this info with me, PLEASE take a couple of moinutes away from the baseball stats, debates and theories to contact FEMA on behalf of the numerous people who are still suffering after Katrina.

THANK YOU!