This afternoon the National Hurricane Center UPGRADED Hurricane Laura to a "CATASTROPHIC" CAT-4 storm with potentially "unsurvivable storm surge." From the NHC bulletin:
Mercy Chefs is mobilizing TWO ENTIRE TEAMS to get ready. Any help you can provide right now will make a HUGE DIFFERENCE in our ability to quickly and most effectively respond. Go here to make your tax-deductible gift, and click here for more information from my previous update.
I'll provide more updates as the storm progresses.
Wednesday A.M. from New Orleans
I'm writing to you from New Orleans which is just outside the expected strike zone for Hurricane Laura -- what is now a rapidly developing hurricane that could grow to a Category Four storm and come ashore along the Texas/Louisiana border as a powerful CAT 3 monster.
This is a fast moving storm that is expected to bring 11-14 feet of storm surge and major wind damage to an area that has been hit hard in recent years. Unfortunately, Laura is following a pattern and a track that makes a major strike highly probable. About 70% of the most devastating hurricanes experienced the rapid intensification effect that we are now seeing with Laura. The storm already has brought deadly flooding to the Caribbean. At least 23 have reportedly died and that number could increase as countries like Haiti and the Dominican Republic begin their recovery.Read more
It is moments like these that tear at my mind and heart.
There must be some way we can do more...
+ + Thousands of meals this weekend...
Friday through Sunday, we will serve over 5,000 meals in flooded Texas.
The need is great. Those who are volunteering with us are still without power, but they are here helping their neighbors even in the midst of their own need. Despite all the struggles with the Coronavirus and now this storm, they want to keep loving and supporting their community. Firemen and police officers and town employees are coming to get meals to deliver to people they know by name and who need help.
As I write, our team is preparing and serving meals to Texas hurricane victims. Please go here to help, and see below for details. -- Gary
The floodwaters have mostly receded, but the 17 inches of rain that hit South Texas has left many homes damaged and families struggling to pick up the pieces.
Our team is seeing the all-too familiar sites of blue tarps on houses, piles of debris in yards, and people still trying to sort out what next steps they should take.
The need in these hard-hit communities is great. Many people were already at risk and in poverty before COVID. In the past few months, the area has been ravaged by the economic fallout from the COVID crisis. Unemployment is rampant.
Then, the hurricane hit -- dropping 17 inches of rain in four hours. The flooding just multiplied the suffering and complicated the issue of local communities bearing the brunt of responding to issues created by the ongoing border catastrophe.
These communities in the Rio Grande River are urgently in need of help.