Deschutes Public Library News
Local Volunteers Aid Katrina Victims
Posted By: Liz Goodrich
Date Posted: 2/15/2007
In August 2005, Hurricane Katrina made landfall and left a wide swath of destruction. Today, over one year later, the residents of the entire Gulf Coast are still grappling with efforts to reclaim their lives. Deschutes Public Library welcomes a group of local volunteers who traveled to Biloxi, MS to participate in reconstruction efforts in conjunction with the Northern Virginia Affiliate of Habitat For Humanity at the Sisters Public Library on Sunday, February 25, 2007 at 2:00 p.m. This program is free and open to the public.
“I went to Biloxi in May of 2006, nearly nine months after the hurricane,” says Sue Cavanaugh, one local volunteer who traveled to Biloxi.. “I was shocked to see that so little had been done to clean up the mess.” Cavanaugh, who retired in 2002 from the Department of Justice in Washington DC, says that although she witnessed stories of hope, they seemed infinitesimal when compared to the thousands of stories of despair. Cavanaugh continues to volunteer with the local chapter of Habitat For Humanity both on construction sites as well as at the ReStore.
Don Kunz, a second local Habitat volunteer said he was compelled to travel to Biloxi because of reports that federal and local governments had failed the victims of the storm. “I thought I could help in some small way.” Kunz was inspired by the numbers of people who mobilized for clean up and reconstruction efforts. “I thought I would be one of 100 or so volunteers. I was surprised and pleased to see over 1,000 people who made serious commitments to help.” The volunteers came from all over the country and from various walks of life, said Kunz. Kunz, who is a retired English professor continues to volunteer with the local chapter of Habitat For Humanity at the ReStore and is member of their “deconstruction” team.
For information about this or other library programs, please call 312-1032.