Today, 10 years after Hurricane Katrina, the scars are still tender; they linger on the New Orleans cityscape and in the hearts and minds of residents. There are several reasons why the Gulf Coast hasn’t healed, but the short attention span of human beings is the main one.
After Katrina, the money and volunteers poured in. Many activists stayed for months, even a couple of years, rehabbing houses, setting up food banks, cultivating community gardens. But time tends to attenuate passions. That’s completely understandable. Personal issues may intrude. New catastrophes occur.
In any event, organizations and ad hoc groups — many from American universities — have been drifting away from New Orleans, either because new calamities beckon or because volunteers burn out.
But much of the city is still underwater, figuratively if not literally. Both immediate and longterm needs remain. And the Cal-based Magnolia Project is one of the few organizations committed to ongoing succor.
Operating out of the UC Berkeley Public Service Center, the project is now in its tenth year, with every indication it’s set to steam on for another decade.
Read the full story by Glen Martin about the Magnolia Project in California magazine.