GFWC Texas Reaches Out to Louisiana Flood Victims
October 4, 2016
Storms bringing more than 7 trillion gallons of water, 145,000 homes flooded and destroyed, tens of thousands left homeless or rescued from rooftops and trees, 20 parishes destroyed, not to mention 13 deaths. Louisianans will not forget 2016 any time soon.
While the economic impact to Louisiana was still being evaluated, Federation Sisters from across the nation began organizing relief efforts. One of the many who immediately headed to Louisiana was Helen Lamberth, from Liberty Woman’s Club GFWC Texas. “Texas began a fundraising effort to help our sister state, but that was just beginning. I had personal knowledge of what these families would be dealing with and I knew I could help.”
Helen contacted Louisiana State President, Cathie Ryan and learned that Tish Sedlin, a long-time Lagniappe Woman’s Club member had a very short window of time to remove debris from her home before it was destroyed with only her two children to help. Helen immediately left for Baton Rouge with a truck load of supplies. The next day, Diane Gretencord and Linda Lang of the Woman’s Civic Club of Jasper followed with another load of cleaning supplies and linens. Helen, Diane, Linda and additional volunteers located by President Ryan salvaged what they could, and shoveled the rest of the Sedlin’s belongings to the curb. Family, friends, and strangers were knee deep in mud and debris for days.
It will be years before the people of Louisiana recover. GFWC Texas will present monetary contributions and donations to GFWC Louisiana at the South Central Region Conference in Lafayette, Louisiana in mid-October.
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Elaine Oppenheimer has been in love with the GFWC Needham Women’s Club since joining in 2015.
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