Lake Charles, Lousiana (August 29, 2020) – Residents of Lake Charles, Louisiana are still reeling after Hurricane Laura made landfall as a Category 4 hurricane on Thursday. Most of the city is still without power, and estimates for water service remain a distant hope. With temperatures in the 90s, heat and dehydration are a concern.
To combat this, The Salvation Army has been delivering water, sports drinks, and snacks today and will provide a hot meal for dinner this evening. Regular meal and hydration services will continue as long as residents remain without power and water.
To many residents, The Salvation Army became a beacon of hope after days with nothing. One resident, Deatta, whose house is severely damaged talked about her fear as the ceilings caved in and her windows blew out around her. The simple luxury of a few bottles of water made a tremendous difference. “The Salvation Army is the only organization I’ve seen on the ground this early. It just means so much to know that someone cares about us.”
Another sweet woman, Cathy, broke down in tears when handed a single roll of toilet paper and a hug. “I’ll be okay,” she choked out. “I lost everything, and we don’t have insurance. It’s…just…so good to see y’all here.”
One after one, residents shared their stories. Some, like Shannon, simply asked for prayer for their families as they navigate this recovery.
“Even in the most hopeless situation, we are so blessed to be a small part of bringing hope to those who need it most,” shared Major Melody Davis, with Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi Divisional Headquarters.
As natural disasters can increase mental stress, The Salvation Army’s Emotional & Spiritual Care HOPEline remains available. Anyone needing a caring listener – whether because of natural disaster, COVID-19, or the stress of life in general – can call 844-458-HOPE (4673) for support. HOPEline hours are 8 AM to 11 PM CDT, 7 days a week. For the latest emergency disaster services news from The Salvation Army, follow the social feed on Twitter at @salarmyeds or visit disaster.salvationarmyusa.org. To donate to The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts, visit HelpSalvationArmy.org.