Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Post Katrina 2 Years Later: Finding ways to help the Ms. coast
With the two year anniversary looming for when Hurricane Katrina hit the
Mississippi coast, I have read of some progress. See this news
New Orleans is another topic for another day.
Hurricane Katrina was the third-strongest hurricane on record to ever hit the United States. Given the extent of widespread damage done over such a large area, the Mississippi coast needs the help of many. Ninety percent of the buildings along the coast were destroyed. There is so much that needs to be done that is beyond the scope of federal, state, and local governments to handle.
As a Mississippi native, I spent many summers visiting the coast and enjoying the one-of-a-kind heritage and culture.
Several of the places that we featured within our Mississippi coast guide were destroyed, including the old house above which housed the Biloxi Chamber of Commerce, which was located behind the Biloxi Lighthouse (which survived intact with minor damage to the interior).
In a fitting tribute, the new license plate has the lighthouse, which stands as a beacon of hope for those that survived the hurricane.
The city of Biloxi has been leading other area communities in rebuilding efforts. In time, the area will recover, and be a tourist mecca again. One of the key problems right now for homeowners and businesses is recouping their losses through insurance claims, and the high cost of insurance for new buildings and cost of construction materials as a result of hurricane damage. Ways must be found to streamline agencies such as FEMA in responding to crisis, and not stand in the way of progress.
Volunteers are needed now more than ever. If you can help in any way, please visit the following links below (compiled courtesy of www.photosfromkatrina.com).
Mississippi Hurricane Recovery
The Salvation Army
(from studies, the Salvation Army has found to be the most efficient operation as far as using the most of donated funds to directly benefit those in need)
In a future post I will note what RVers are doing to help, our future trip to the area to help, and what tourism venues (hotels, b&bs, etc.) have re-opened and are now welcoming vacationers back to the area.