The Common Good
December 2008

New Orleans, Three Years After

by Jeannie Choi | December 2008

The Gulf Coast—and New Orleans, specifically—is far from recovered after being ravaged in 2005 by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

The Gulf Coast—and New Orleans, specifically—is far from recovered after being ravaged in 2005 by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Churches and faith-based organizations have responded to the humanitarian need with outstanding leadership, at tremendous cost. For example, despite the $104 million in unrecovered property losses following Hurricane Katrina, the Catholic archdiocese of New Orleans has committed $89 million for long-term hurricane recovery, according to its 2008 financial report.

* 850,000. Number of residents the New Orleans archdiocese has served since the hurricanes.

* 14,000. Number of New Orleans families who receive disaster housing rental assistance vouchers, which expire next March.

* 151,128,294. Pounds of food provided by the New Orleans archdiocese to individuals and faith-based and community nonprofits who feed the hungry.

* 15. Percentage of residents who say they’ve been diagnosed with a serious mental illness, up from 5 percent in 2006.

* 46. Percentage increase in rent paid by New Orleans residents since the hurricanes.

—Jeannie Choi

Sources: “Post-Katrina Financial Report 2008” (Archdiocese of New Orleans); “New Orleans Three Years After the Storm” (The Kaiser Family Foundation, 2008); “The New Orleans Index” (The Brookings Institution and Greater New Orleans Community Data Center); The New York Times.

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