Disaster/Environmental Emergency: Severe Storms & Flooding | Louisiana
Affected Tribe: United Houma Nation | http://www.unitedhoumanation.org/
Inside/Outside PWNA’s Service Area: Outside of PWNA’s regular service area (PWNA previously aided the United Houma Nation after Hurricanes Katrina, Gustav and Ike.)
Impact on Tribe: Severe storms occurred in Louisiana on August 11, 2016, leading to widespread flooding. Residents of the United Houma Nation are included in the FEMA response to the disaster declaration for the state of Louisiana. Gov. Edwards traveled to affected areas and saw “the destruction caused by this unprecedented flooding.” Some roads were closed and families were displaced, affecting up to 250 tribal citizens, and resulting in loss of homes, vehicles and personal effects for some. The Houma Nation is connected by bayous and canals along the southeastern coast of Louisiana that once enabled a waterways living for their people. Boat travel between some parishes is no longer an option due to the effects of coastal erosion that has left many of the waterways unsafe or impassable.
PWNA Aid Requested: On August 19, emergency aid was requested in the form of water, nonperishable food, personal hygiene items and cleaning products. PWNA coordinated its response with Principal Chief Thomas Dardar, Jr., Lanor Curole/United Houma Nation Director/Administrator and assistant Bette Billiot on needs and delivery logistics.
PWNA Disaster Response:
- 36,446 pounds of food shipped, including tuna, MREs (ready-to-eat meals), peanut butter, soda, crackers and energy drinks
- 86,654 pounds of cleaning supplies shipped, including bleach, wipes, soap, sanitizers, latex gloves, trash bags and buckets, along with emergency and baby blankets, personal hygiene items and over-the-counter health products such as ointments and bandages
- $1,271,670 worth of food and cleaning supplies in the 84 pallets provided by PWNA
In addition, PWNA coordinated disaster response with the American Red Cross, and they provided 38,304 pounds of water (18 pallets) valued at $65,117.
Impact/Feedback: The assistant shared this feedback in an email: “Chief Thomas, volunteers, and staff can't thank PWNA enough for their amazing generosity during this unexpected natural disaster that came across our region affecting thousands of families. With your help we were able to remove… some of the financial stress and worry of having to buy cleaning supplies, food, water, and everyday household items that were lost.”
On a Sept. 28 call with Chief Thomas Dardar, he added, “Every product was a great quality product and everything sent was needed and appreciated. The blankets in particular were so appreciated by the Elders.” He personally delivered some of the supplies to those in need and couldn’t express enough how grateful he was for PWNA responding so quickly to the needs of those affected by the flooding.