Adventist Volunteers Rebuild Hope in New Orleans

February 01, 2012 | Colette Newer

Eighteen people from the North Pacific Union Conference (NPUC) participated in a homeland mission trip in November 2011 to rehabilitate homes destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

This was the third Katrina rebuilding trip hosted by the Adventist Community Services (ACS) Washington, with previous trips in 2007 and 2009 to New Orleans, La.

Volunteers this year included members from the Oregon, Upper Columbia and Washington conferences, several of whom had volunteered in New Orleans previously. Northwest volunteers worked side by side on three houses with a team from Northeastern Conference to give residents hope of returning to their homes.

Sixty percent of the rebuilding in New Orleans has been accomplished by volunteers from various organizations. ACS focused on helping elderly or fixed-income homeowners who don't have the means to otherwise repair their homes. Some had hired contractors who then left town with the repair money.

During a tour of homes worked on by Adventists throughout the five years, homeowners had a chance to express their appreciation for the commitment and service of the volunteers who made it possible for them to return home and rebuild their lives.

A ceremony on Nov. 12 at the Caffin Avenue Church marked the end of the Adventist five-year rebuilding response to Hurricane Katrina. ACS-Washington and Washington Conference volunteers were recognized for their multiple years of helping the people of New Orleans.