Email from a friend in Houston

Got this today from a friend in Houston:

Houston has about 25,000 additional residents now, thanks to Hurricane Katrina. I am sure the official # is much much higher, but this is what the media has reported. I am sure most of you have been watching the news and seeing the footage of the evacuees, and it is incredibly depressing.

Being RIGHT HERE, I felt that I had to do something. In addition to all of the Shelters and the Astrodome, there is not a single hotel vacancy in the area. As you drive around the city, you see Louisian plates everywhere. Some families are just hanging out in the hotel parking lots waiting for other families to check out. Friday, some of us from work pitched in to buy pet food for the SPCA, which is housing roughly an additional 1000 animals.

Yesterday I went to drop of donations of all of [her 2-year-old boy's] old clothes and Volunteer at the Astrodome. The Police were turning away volunteers and sending us to other shelters, which is probably best because the stomach problems and diarrhea are epidemic in the astrodome now. Apparently, whatever is in the water in N.O. takes a few days to start messing up your system.

We ended up spending the day at the George R Brown Convention Center, setting up the shelter there and helping with the evacuees. I have to say it was amazing to see how many people showed up to help.

We spent the first few hours sorting all the donations and setting up the "store" so that the evacuees could get fresh clothing in the right size as they arrived. The amount of clothing donated is phenomenal, we barely made a dent (there were probably 100-150 of us sorting clothing), and they were still receiving donations when we left last night.

After that, I went to serve food, and I have to say that everyone I met was so gracious and nice, and just thankful for everything that was being done for them. No one really was talking much, for the most part I imagine everyone is just exhausted at this point. But every single person made a point of saying "thank you for helping us."

The Convention Cetner set up is really cool. They have created activity areas with all the stuff that has been donated for all of the children that are displaced. The parents bring them up, sign them in, and then mom or dad can go take a nap or have a hot shower or adult conversation and know that there children are safe.

I spent some time in the "Library/Quiet Activities Center" to be with the kids. They told us that alot of these children are extremely angry and may or may not want to talk about what has happened, but most of them i saw did not want to talk AT ALL. I played a few games of Connect Four and colored in some coloring books, and generally got to play with the kids. I think it's good for them to finally interact with people that aren't stealing from them, or hurting them and God knows what else, or sticking a microphone in their faces and asking, "Johnnny, your 7. How do you feel about all this?"

I think the children will have the most problems emotionally and health wise in the long term. But it did feel good to at least help start that recovery, and begin to teach them its okay to trust again.

Anyway, I hope all of you are happy and healthy and safe. Please do what ever you can to help. I didn't have money, so I gave my time and what things I already had that these people need. Which is EVERYTHING. As I volunteer more, I will post pictures so you can see what I have seen first hand, and that these people are not all the bad things you are seeing on tv.

I'll post the pictures when she uploads them to MySpace.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Much obliged,

Clancy, fer yer moral support over at my joint today.

Also, y'all make me blush! ;-)

Also, I left a query ...

Also, for the record, here's a pic of me. Sort of.

Oh, and the ER household is SO ready for our state fair! :-)


I was unclear

Man, I must've been wore plumb out yesterday. :-) I knew that was you in the real pictures. I'm struck by the illustration of the brunet and blonde, the first images you see here when you come here. The illustrated blond seriously looks so much like this gal I knew in Texas that it boggles. .. Then, I think it might be famous thing. Anyway, it's a great drawing. :-)

(Hey, I splained to someone what a scuppernong was on another blog yesterday. I know from readin' about 'em, is all. But I thought you might get a kick out of that.)

Banner image

Oh!!! Sorry, you mean my banner image. That's from a Sweet Valley High book! :-) Here it is in its original context.

Scuppernongs! Also known as muscadines. I never heard them called muscadines until I was in college, heh. Then a guy was talking about picking muscadines, and I was like, isn't that a hallucinogen...?

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.