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Summer of Service: New Orleans

This August 29 marked ten years since Hurricane Katrina devastated much of New Orleans and many other communities in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Estimates place the damage in excess of $100 million. More devastating than the storm itself perhaps, is the long-term impact that it has had on the communities that were flooded, including New Orleans.

Flooding in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina

Flooding in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina

Much of New Orleans sits below sea level, so is protected from flooding on a daily basis by levees. When those levees failed during the storm, more than 80 percent of the city was flooded. Many residents lost everything they owned because of the storm’s aftermath: the flooding. And while many were able to return and rebuild within months, thousands of families still have not returned and homes stand vacant in some of New Orleans neighborhoods.
To say that New Orleans still needs assistance might be an understatement. With that in mind, a group of over 20 teenagers and adults traveled from my church in Park City, Utah to New Orleans to assist home owners in the rebuilding process which continues in several neighborhoods throughout the city. They were participating in a study at church called “Summer of Service” and this trip was an opportunity to step out of their comfort zone and serve those in real need.
10 Years Later - A Work in Progress

10 Years Later – A Work in Progress

My daughter, Nicole, was one of the teens on that trip. The group worked with an organization called ReachGlobal, the crisis response ministry of the EFCA, which has been working in New Orleans since 2005. Nicole’s group was split into teams to assist with work projects at various homes in New Orleans including in the Ninth Ward. The first two days, Nicole’s team worked on Mr. Joe’s house. Mr. Joe is a 66 year old Vietnam veteran. He has been slowly repairing his home over the past ten years. The two days they worked on his home they completed a new roof. After that, Mr. Joe could not afford additional supplies, so they were unable to continue any projects for him. ReachGlobal’s model is that while they provide free labor, the homeowners must purchase the supplies for every project.
Morning Huddle For their final three work days, Nicole’s group moved on to a home that had been purchased by a ReachGlobal team member. Much of this home needed to be completely gutted and rebuilt. The team worked on cleaning the areas that were salvageable and painting areas with new drywall and trim.
It was hard work, but the group completed many projects during their five work days. And they all came home with a fresh appreciation for the blessings they have and believing in a hopeful future for New Orleans.

New Orleans: an enchanting and rich cultural experience

Is it cold and windy, maybe even rainy where you are? Given that it’s November 4th, our guess is that it very well may be. Do you know where it’s not blustery or damp? New Orleans. This week’s forecast sees high temperatures in the upper 70s and low 80s, with mild evenings and partly cloudy skies. If that’s not reason enough to book a trip, I’m not sure what is, but here are a few more compelling details that might get your fingers clicking on the keyboard to find a flight.


Festivals. Nola does food and music right, and upcoming this month are the Jazz in the ParkTreme Creole Gumbo Festival, the Voodoo Music Experience, and Oak Street Po Boy Festival. My mouth is literally watering right now, and you can bet the New Orleans Jazz music won’t be leaving your ears anytime soon after you hear it live and up close.


New Orleans offers a whole host of recreational activities beyond their famous festivals: shopping and dining are amongst the many. Casinos and museums abound, to satisfy your diverse interests, and the New Orleans Saints make autumn an exciting season for the city’s sports lovers.


Did I hear you ask about accommodations? WorldMark at New Orleans is snuggled up right next to a streetcar stop for your exploring convenience, and the courtyard pool and rooftop sundeck are reasons enough to leave the wintering weather behind you and come stay at this resort. Need more options? Wyndham’s Avenue Plaza and La Belle Maison are New Orleans timeshares that offer suites and excellent service. La Belle Maison was highly ranked as #2 of 16 specialty accommodations in Nola on Tripadvisor.com, and its reviews speak for its experience. Wyndham’s Avenue Plaza in the Garden District also offers spacious suites and sunny courtyard dining.

If you’re already a timeshare owner, book your next timeshare trade week to New Orleans, and tell us how you liked it. If you’re looking to buy New Orleans timeshare resale, well, come on over to our website here to talk to licensed real estate agents about which property we have might be right for you.


And if you’re headed to New Orleans, don’t forget to party like a local.