Local Couple Leads Rebuilding Effort Even As Isaac Bears Down | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Local Couple Leads Rebuilding Effort Even As Isaac Bears Down

Play associated audio
Volunteers with the St. Bernard Project work to install drywall.
Bridget Nolan/St. Bernard Project
Volunteers with the St. Bernard Project work to install drywall.

As Hurricane Isaac slowly grinds across the Gulf Coast region, two native Washingtonians who have been working to rebuild homes in the region are preparing for the worst and hoping for the best.

In 2005, Liz McCartney and Zack Rosenberg were among the legions of volunteers in the gulf helping rebuild, following Hurricane Katrina. After spending a month in New Orleans with local relief efforts, Rosenberg says, the couple had an epiphany.

"Quite simply, we saw people in need," says Rosenberg. "We saw that there weren't available resources to meet that need, and I don't think we could have done anything else."

They relocated from Washington to New Orleans to create the St. Bernard Project, a non-profit that rebuilds homes and helps support the families living in them. Since 2006, the project has rebuilt more than 445 homes in the greater New Orleans area. Now, with hurricane Isaac expected to make landfall, 7 years to the day that Katrina struck, McCartney says they've done all they can to keep the project's hard work from being destroyed.

"We boarded up windows," says McCartney. "We called past and current clients to see if they needed and assistance getting out of the area, or prepping the house from the storm, so I think the team feels like we did everything we could to adequately prepare."

Rosenberg says although Isaac can destroy homes, it can't diminish what the project has done to restore the faith of families affected by past hurricanes.

"That work has been a massive success and regardless of what happens with Hurricane Isaac because it taught our clients that their American citizenship has meaning, and that their humanity has meaning," says Rosenberg.

The couple says the need in New Orleans remains high, with approximately 8,000 families that can't afford to rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina. The pair is expecting their first child and temporarily evacuated to neighboring Alabama to avoid the brunt of the hurricane.

NPR

'Team America' Is Benched: Won't Return To Theaters, Reports Say

One day after some U.S. theaters vowed to screen Team America: World Police in the place of The Interview, whose release was canceled, word has emerged that Team America has also been pulled.
NPR

What The Change In U.S.-Cuba Relations Might Mean For Food

The decision to normalize relations is driving all kinds of speculation about American food companies opening up shop in Cuba. But analysts say: Don't expect to see McDonald's there anytime soon.
WAMU 88.5

Q&A: Rep. Chris Van Hollen On Alan Gross' Return From Cuba

The congressman from Maryland discusses his involvement in bringing the USAID contractor back to his home state after five years in a Cuban prison.
NPR

North Korea Has Invested Heavily In Cyberattacks

American officials have concluded that North Korea was behind the hack of Sony Pictures Company. Melissa Block talks to James Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.