Right now I feel like I feel when I haven’t seen one of my best friends in a very long time, when we finally sit down for coffee, there is so much to say that I’m not sure where to start.
So, I’ll just start.
We had a terrible flood here, the kind they call a “500-year flood,” meaning that it basically has never and was never expected to happen. Our home was spared, but our city and surrounding areas are devastated.
One thing I don’t mind telling people about myself is that I’m a person of action, and with schools out of session until God knows when, I felt like I HAD to do something to help. Thousands and thousands of children literally don’t have backpacks for school. They don’t have shoes. They don’t have anything. It’s one of those situations where you can’t fully understand unless you see it; photos do not come close to doing any of it justice.
My friend Audrey and I have pooled our resources (You can read more about about that here!) and are concentrating our efforts on getting kids the uniforms and school supplies they need to get back in the classroom and back in a routine. This flood has affected over 42,000 students. Children thrive on routine, and these kids have been through hell. They need some normalcy.
When children are in school, parents can focus on rebuilding, getting necessary paperwork, and doing work that is not necessarily safe for children. If children are in school, parents whose homes were not flooded can focus their efforts on helping those who did flood without the worry of childcare. In addition, people are scrambling to find childcare because the camps and childcare available are at capacity — and I can’t really speak for other parents, but I am having a hard time holding it together in front of my kids. I can’t even wrap my mind around what it would feel like to lose everything and have to keep it together 24/7.
People kept asking us what they could do to help Louisiana, so Audrey and I came up with a strategy. We decided that the first thing that needed to happen was to get these kids back in school, so we (really, she) created Amazon wish lists for heavily-impacted schools. All you have to do is click the link, pick a few things, and Amazon delivers them directly to the school.
It’s only been a few days, and the things that are happening are absolutely amazing. And because there’s no way to explain it fully, I’m just going to SHOW YOU.
Boxes started arriving.
Teachers and staff, some of whom lost their homes, showed up to work when they didn’t have to, to hand out uniforms and school supplies to students who needed them.
The level of gratitude we feel is what keeps us moving forward. Louisiana needs help. WE NEED HELP.
If you would like to donate, here are the links to three different schools in the area that need supplies. I will update this blog post as additional school wish lists are created and sent to me.
Park Forest Middle School:
St. Martin Parish School:
St. Amant Middle School:
Sherwood Middle Academic Magnet School:
Thank you for your support, and please share this information with everyone you know!