Update on the city with no light. We have now been here 11 full days, here are our observations.
NIGHTS ARE THE WORST. I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH. ELDERLY ARE ALONE AND SCARED. ITS WORSE THAN YOU KNOW.
N I G H T S A R E T H E W O R S T (read again)
IT'S VERY DARK
Having been here since 7am the Thursday morning the day after Laura struck, here are some of our observations over the last 11 days.
Elderly people in the outlying communities are struggling immensely, especially after the sun goes down. These individuals, elderly in small towns, need the greatest help. They need regular visits from a capable trustworthy person at least every 2 days. 🙏 They need regular wellness checks with supply deliveries such as ice, food, water and gas for generators. Remember they don't have refrigerators. They need specific supplies badly, things for camping. Things you wouldn't think about, like batteries and flashlights, ice, ice chests, gas cans with fuel, can openers. IT'S VERY VERY DARK AT NIGHT. Tonight we had an elderly woman 70 years old who rushed into our donation center in the heart of downtown Lake Charles, all she wanted was flashlights. These folks HAVE NO POWER. ITS BEEN 11 DAYS. NO HOT WATER. NO STOVE TO COOK ON. NO NETFLIX. NO LAMPS TO READ BY. They are stuck in their homes with no power, it's been 11 days. They can't make their way through their home at night... Many generators are only running portions of homes with little light... their generators are running out of gas. It's humid ugly hot outside. They are so desperate for help, which makes them vulnerable to being preyed upon. They are afraid of being taken advantage of, but because they need help so badly, they acquiesce and pay WAY to much for services.
In the first 3 days after Laura, we cleared an entire community's roads in north Lake Charles, a region called Gooseport. Cajun Navy has run over forty all volunteer 5-10 man teams. We have addressed and closed precisely 265 tree clearing tickets. We've precisely dispatched tons of supplies. We have supplied hotshot teams with large trailers who are bringing supplies into remote communities.
No one is really LIVING in Lake Charles. There's not a mad dash for supplies. Walmart and Sam's are open in the city. Most in Lake Charles are able to go shopping there. Buildings that were lashed by the strong winds and rain have structural damage, individuals living in an apt building location in downtown were told they couldn't move back in for at least 6 months. 1700 miles of the power grid must be rebuilt. Hundreds of towers were damaged or destroyed.
Despite our good results, we have no big backers. Our avg. donation is less than 75$. We haven't been visited by any public officials. We have no major partners. We work 12 hours a day, some of us 20 hours a day. I'm still at it, sleep about 3 hours and get back up at 5:30-6 am every morning.
We are doing this on our own, except for your donations. We are grateful for all of the support you have provided.
To help us. Please show up, volunteer.
Commit to 1 day, 5 days, 15 days, a month.
Prepare to be changed.
We would like to start regular wellness checks. This is a large operation... Which would require a significant change in our operations. We don't have the funding to it, but we are going to try regardless.. I think we will find a way. We can't leave them to their own devices. Help us two ways. Time and Money.
Drop off to us. URGENT
Flashlights, w extra batteries.
Gas cans w fuel.
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Volunteer at cajunrelief.org
Donations to the Cajun Navy are used to activate local volunteers who help the most vulnerable in their own communities during and after disasters.