Malo! from American Samoa. Here are just a few thoughts and a diary of my experiences in American Samoa working with the Catholic Charities USA Disaster Operations Team.
Thursday, October 8, 2009 Day minus one
8:30 Boarded a plane in Baton Rouge headed for Dallas. Sat next to an LSU professor headed for a conference in Wisconsin. She asked me to come speak to her class when I return. Wow. This really is a big deal. Seems like I should be more nervous.
Carol Spruell deployed on Catholic Charities USA Disaster Operations Team
10/6/2009--Baton Rouge, LA--Catholic Charities Diocese of the Diocese of Baton Rouge (CCDBR) has deployed its Communications Director, Carol Spruell, to American Samoa as part of a Catholic Charities USA Disaster Operations team. During her weeklong stay, she’ll assist with the national organization’s relief and recovery work following the recent earthquake and tsunami that devastated the island territory.
“Since becoming the lead case management agency after Katrina, CCDBR has more experience in disasters of this magnitude as any other in the country,” said David Aguillard, Executive Director. “Carol in particular is skilled at assessing a situation and communicating on-the-ground needs in a manner that compels people to take note and act. Our staff is in high demand when the subject of disaster response and relief is on the table.”
Click here to read a story in The Advocate.
Baton Rouge Agency’s Experience Helps Land Hefty Federal Contract for Case Management Operations
Alexandria, VA—Following disaster services delivered by Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge (CCDBR) and others to families affected by Katrina and last year’s Gustav and Ike, Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA) has been selected to provide disaster case management services nationwide. CCUSA’s first-ever federal contract is aimed at helping victims of disaster quickly access critical services and provide the ongoing support they need to recover.
By MARK H. HUNTER
Special to The Advocate
Published: Aug 30, 2009 - Page: 3B
Four years to the day after Hurricane Katrina struck Louisiana, more than 100 people gathered Saturday for an ecumenical prayer breakfast to remember the storm’s human devastation and to honor churches, charities and civic groups that assisted thousands of evacuees.
The gathering at the LSU Lod Cook Alumni Center was held in conjunction with release in Baton Rouge of a Children’s Defense Fund and Katrina Citizens’ Leadership Corps 40-page report on the storm’s aftermath and its effects on the Gulf Coast.
The Most Rev. Robert W. Muench, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge, focused his remarks on how Katrina affected displaced children’s peace of mind.
New name, new location, same commitment to mission
Hammond--On August 12, 2009, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Baton Rouge held an open house to celebrate the grand opening of Catholic Charities Serving Tangipahoa. The name change reflects the array of services Catholic Charities expanded into Tangipahoa Parish following Hurricane Katrina. Tangipahoa Cares was an emergency assistance program of Catholic Charities and the agency’s most widely-known service in the parish.
“Today, emergency assistance is only one service offered by Catholic Charities Serving Tangipahoa,” explained Lynn Gaudet, CCDBR Social & Community Responsibility Director.
Rather than focusing on band-aid assistance with short-term benefits, Catholic Charities Serving Tangipahoa works to break the cycle of poverty for families by offering a comprehensive roster of programs, like employment assistance, personal finance classes, mental health counseling and more.
“We help families help themselves and become more self-reliant,” said Gaudet.