National News

Help Is On The Way To a Gulf Coast Devastated By Hurricane Ida

  • A news crew in New Orleans films as Hurricane Ida's storm surge pushes water from Lake Pontchartrain over Lakeshore Drive Aug. 29, 2021. (Photo: CNS/Michael DeMocker, USA TODAY Network via Reuters)
  • Traffic in Orange, Texas, moves bumper to bumper along I-10 west Aug. 28, 2021, as Louisiana residents arrive into Texas ahead of Hurricane Ida. (Photo: CNS/Adrees Latif, Reuters)
  • A man in New Orleans's French Quarter rides a bicycle on Bourbon Street ahead of Hurricane Ida Aug. 29, 2021. (Photo: CNS/Marco Bello, Reuters)
  • Christina Bourg of Morgan City, La., snuggles her son Jean-Luc, 8, as her daughter Olivia, 10, places the finishing touches on a sign they painted after boarding up their property in preparation for Hurricane Ida Aug. 28, 2021. (Photo: CNS/Adrees Latif, Reuters)


WINDSOR TERRACE ​​— As New Orleans and its suburbs remained flooded, damaged, and without electricity, disaster relief was heading to a Gulf Coast reeling from the destructive fury of Hurricane Ida. 

Even as the storm moved on, much of New Orleans and its suburbs remained without power and dozens of thoroughfares in the area were said to be flooded. Officials in Jefferson Parish, which is included in Greater New Orleans, told residents they could be without water for the better part of a week following multiple water main breaks. 

But relief assistance is on the way from all across the country, including New York City. Members of the NYPD and FDNY’s FEMA Urban Search and Rescue team, including search and rescue dogs, are on their way to Louisiana to help. They’re packing Swiftwater boats, Hazmat gear, and medical equipment, and a convoy of trailers, box trucks and pickup trucks carrying a variety of aid has been deployed.

“Over 80 specially trained personnel from the NYPD, FDNY, and NYC Office of Emergency Management, along with six NYPD ESU search & rescue K9 [units] will be assisting in the rescue efforts during Hurricane Ida,” said the NYPD Special Ops unit Twitter account.

Meanwhile, Catholic Charities USA launched a text-to-give hotline on Sunday that will provide direct assistance to local agencies that were in the hurricane’s path.

“Donations will provide much-needed support to those impacted by the disaster,” the national organization said Monday, “including shelter, food, and other humanitarian aid.”

According to the statement, 100% of funds raised by Catholic Charities USA would be directed “to its agencies with residents impacted by Hurricane Ida.”

New Orleans’ Archbishop Gregory Aymond took to Facebook on August 29 to announce that as a result of Hurricane Ida, the archdiocese was closing all Catholic schools to both in-person and virtual learning through at least Monday, September 6 as the diocese and school leaders assess the damage and planning. 

“Loving and faithful Lord Jesus, we call upon you in this time of need,” the archbishop said Sunday morning while announcing the obligation to attend Mass was lifted. “You were with the apostles in the boat during the storm, You protected them and gave them a sense of calm. Please do the same for us as we face Ida.”