Update on ERD’s Response after Hurricane Katrina

September 20, 2005

Episcopal Relief and Development is furthering its efforts to help people affected by Hurricane Katrina.

ERD is partnering with the Diocese of Texas to support a multi-faceted response assisting people displaced by Hurricane Katrina. ERD’s funding will help the diocese take part in Operation Compassion, an effort of faith-based and secular agencies to assist individuals relocating to the Houston area. The project is providing aid such as food, supplies, and child care for the over 5,000-10,000 evacuees being processed daily through the convention center and other area shelters.

Our assistance is also helping the diocese coordinate and support congregations and parishioners providing emergency services to displaced people. For example, Episcopal parishes in Bryan, Woodlands, Bastrop, Friendswood, and Beaumont are transporting and feeding several hundred evacuees. Congregations in League City and Austin are assisting with the medical needs of displaced people by securing donated medicines and holding blood drives.

ERD is providing additional support to the Diocese of Mississippi which will support the diocese’s disaster relief station located at Coast Episcopal School in Long Beach. “There are medical clinics in two of the four disaster relief stations [set up by the diocese] in Long Beach and Ocean Springs where services from food to clothing to other supplies are available,” said the Rev. Diane Livingston, Volunteer Coordinator for the diocese and ERD’s Diocesan Coordinator. “ERD’s funds to the diocese are helping to make this happen,” said Livingston. “Crews are also going into the community to help people clean and repair their homes.”

In the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast, four Episcopal churches and one camp and conference center are providing support to families directly affected by the hurricane. Members of St. Paul’s Church in Magnolia Springs are helping displaced families by providing them with clothing, housing, transportation, job search assistance, and other needs. St. Paul’s Church in Daphne is supporting the efforts to feed evacuees at the Daphne Civic Center.

Robert W. Radtke, ERD President, and The Most Rev. Frank T. Griswold, The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, are in Louisiana visiting with the Rt. Rev. Charles E. Jenkins, Bishop of Louisiana. Today, they will go to New Orleans with Bishop Jenkins.

“It is a privilege to witness and assist the work of Episcopalians throughout the entire Gulf Coast as they minister to those in need and work to rebuild their communities,” said Radtke.

For more details about the response to Hurricane Katrina, please check the Hurricane Katrina Crisis Center on our Web site at http://www.er-d.org/. The center is regularly updated with new information, personal accounts, and other resources.

To make a contribution to help people affected by Hurricane Katrina, please donate to the Hurricane Katrina Response Fund by credit card at http://www.er-d.org/ or by calling 1-800-334-7626, ext. 5129. Gifts can be mailed to: Episcopal Relief and Development, c/o Hurricane Katrina Response Fund, PO Box 12043, Newark, NJ 07101.

Episcopal Relief and Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church of the United States. An independent 501(c) 3 organization, ERD saves lives and builds hope in communities around the world. We provide emergency assistance in times of crisis and rebuild after disasters. We enable people to climb out of poverty by offering long-term solutions in the areas of food security and health care, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.