Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Our Last Day of Work in St. Bernard Parish, LA

Lindsay Swick:
I have had such an awesome exprerience while i've been here. I had so much fun and found it so accomplishing. I loved meeting all of the wonderful people here. Everyone is so extremely friendly and im going to miss them terribly. I hope to come back to help out again as soon as possible and to raise money and awareness back in Washington state. I just wanna say thank you and that I'll miss Ms. Joan, the Ansardi's, Caitlin, Pickles :), and everyone else who I've met. You're all so wonderful!

Kaitlyn van der Velde:
Helping out with Mrs. Joan's house with St. Bernard project has been a great experince that I can't imagine living without. Meeting all of the wonderful people of St. Bernard Perish and hearing all of their life changing stories has opened my eyes to see how much these people have been neglected. I can't wait to come back down to La and see Mrs. Joan's lovely home :)

Thank you to everyone who we've met on this trip, You've made it an even better experience.

Mike Morrison:
Hearing these peoples stories has truly been eye opening for me. I did not understand the pain and struggles that they went through for so long. This trip has shown me that I can make a difference in peoples lives just by taking some time out of my day to help another. Working on Joan's house has helped me to understand the importance of helping out others in the world. She is a great lady who did not deserve what happened to her, I wish the best of luck to her.

Drew David:
Words can not explain the way I felt about this trip, I am truely inspired. I loved hearing everyones stories and their different point of views of the whole hurricane. I have been inspired so much that I want to come back this summer and continue to back till after college. Then after college I am going to move down here and continue my quest to rebuild the city of New Orleans and restoring the faith in everyone that once lived here.

I am blessed to have met y'all and hear your stories. Thank you for having me and I plan to be back soon to help y'all out. I believe that this is what I am supposed to do in life.

Katie Repine:
This trip has really opened my eyes to the terrible things that people had to go through after this disaster struck. I am truely glad that people did not give up all hope, and if they did, they gained it all back when st. bernard project came to help them. We have met a few families this trip and hearing their stories are truly inspiring, i am so glad that i came on this trip and got to have this experience. We worked on a women named Joan's house and i am so glad that i could just have helped her a little bit, seeing how thankful she was and also all how the work we accomplished was truely amazing to everyone. My favorite part about this trip was when we were laying the flooring down in Joan's home and we all signed the floor on the foam part before the floor was actually laid. We showed Joan and she really liked it and i thought it was cool that we were leaving our mark behind and that everytime she walks on the floor she will remember the people that care about her and helped her back into her home.
I enjoyed this trip in so many ways and really hope i get the opportunity to come back again and i would really persuade anyone to come down here to help these people it is a great experience

Lindsey Meyer:
This being my second trip to out here has been just as amazing as the first. It's so amazing seeing people coming from all over to help out. One lady was even talking about a man coming from China. If something so terrible happened to my community, I would want people to come down and help. Making a difference in these people's lives is so touching. I can't wait to come back!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tumwater Teens: Our Work Today in St. Bernard Parish

Today we finished most of the flooring! Only one room left to go.
Kaitlyn learned how to hang a door in Ms. Joan's house and we are going to hang more doors tomorrow.

We heard a lot of stories from the residents and made some friends. Ms. Joan talked to us at lunchtime about how she stayed during the hurricane, and was rescued and sent to the Houston Astrodome. She said things were really bad there, and she called some relatives in Tennessee who helped her stay there. She then went back home and had nothing left except a FEMA trailer to stay in. The FEMA trailer made her sick. She's very thankful that St. Bernard is helping her.

We had a visit from Les Scharfenstein, a friend Cindy, Lindsey, and Caitlin made in July when they came to visit the area. Les said things are steadily improving in the area. Les is a retired principal, who does part-time teaching and works for St. Bernard Project part-time, too. Les decided to help St. Bernard Project after they helped he and his wife rebuild their home. He helped us find the address of the Ansardi family, a friend of the Meyer family.

We went to visit William and Sharon Ansardi after we were done with work. St. Bernard Project rebuilt their home, and they moved in around Thanksgiving time. They had us sign their guest book because they said they want to remember all the angels (the volunteers) who come to St. Bernard Parish to help. They have a sign in front of their yard that used to say "You gotta have Faith" that survived Katrina. It's getting old, so now is says "You Faith", but William says he doesn't need a sign to remind him of the Faith he has and how all the volunteers come to help the people of da parish.

We wrote our names on the floor of Ms. Joan's living room today before we laid the laminate. Ms. Joan laughed and said most volunteers sign their names on the floors or the walls. She said even though she lives alone, she'll really be surrounded by the volunteers.

Here are some pictures from today:

Monday, April 6, 2009

Tumwater Teens: Our First Work Day in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana

Today we learned how to lay laminate flooring in Ms. Joan Dalon's house. We finished two rooms! We also talked to the homeowner, who has waited almost four years for a home. Then Fire Chief Thomas Stone came to talk to us. He told us stories of what happened during and after Katrina, and how the firefighters saved thousands of residents and kept them alive by finding water and food and medicine. Tomorrow we lay some more flooring, and might put in some doors.
Here are some pictures. Enjoy!

By Lindsay Swick, Katie Repine, Kaitlyn VanderVelde, Lindsey Meyer, Drew David and Mike Morrison

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Tumwater Teens Arrive in New Orleans

After a full day of travel, the Tumwater Teens arrived in New Orleans around 10:30 last night.

Today, we'll be visiting the community of St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana, and touring New Orleans. Tomorrow - we're off to St. Bernard Project to help rebuild a home!

Stay tuned - we'll post pictures each day and update you on our adventure :>)