Hannah Sassaman — Banned from the National Association of Broadcasters Since 2002

Collected Resources on Helping Out in New Orleans Now
August 31, 2008, 5:44 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

(UPDATE — a few sites seem to be pointing folks this way, so i’m going to keep this post up and add more resources, like an update from the houma nation, to the comments.  keep checking the gustav wiki and brownfemipower, best sites for updates so far.  and i’ll keep posting practical ways to help over the next days, if that’s helpful — hjs)

hey all, hannah sassaman, formerly of prometheus radio project and now of seiu healthcare pennsylvania delurking to talk about the hurricane for a second.

i’m sure that many of you are trying to figure out what you can do to support people who are leaving new orleans and the regions surrounding it.  i’m in touch with a number of folks on the ground collecting money to buy resources to support people who must stay in the city or who are choosing not to leave.

one challenge that has come up is that many residents of the city don’t trust that they can leave, and come back, to their homes.  it took many of them 18 months to two years to get back to their communities.  so there’s an effort underway to raise money in cities outside of NOLA, where many folks are being evacuated to.  organizers on the ground are hoping that with a safety net of money and logistical support, more folks will be able to leave for their safety, while the communities battle hard for the right to return.  that project is still in development, but i’ll write more here when i know where folks are collecting money for that.  write me if you are available for it.

INCITE! women of color against violence is collecting money to bond out prisoners from the new orleans jails — http://brownfemipower.com/archives/2871

jim ellinger, who i worked with in 2003 when a number of us set up a licensed low power FM station with evacuees from the new orleans superdome, is working on communications support for new orleans.   he’s likely overwhelmed, but looking for equipment and funds for ham radio and other two-way radio infrastructure.  if you can help even a bit — or you have contacts with communications experts in the southeast — call him at 512-796-4332 or write him at jimedia@grandecom.net. not sure when he’s driving from austin to NOLA.

andy carvin is setting up an online resources page for volunteers hoping to help from afar — http://www.andycarvin.com/ — including the gustav information center — http://gustav08.ning.com/

and common ground relief — with many more resources than they had when katrina came through — is looking for donations to support their search-and-rescue work and immediate support work after the storm — as well as the work they are doing to help folks get out of the city right now — http://www.commongroundrelief.org/ .

any other news/links to share?  i’d really like to know how folks in houma are doing.  the houma nation, which applied for a community radio station, is right in the path of the storm.


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Hurricane Gustav Threat: Your Support Urgently Needed!

To members of INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence

Updates located at this website:


Dear INCITE! friends and supporters,

On the eve of the 3 year anniversary of the devastation wrought byHurricanes Katrina and Rita and subsequent government criminal negligence
and assaults on the low income people of color on the Gulf Coast, our sisters from INCITE! projects in New Orleans (including the local chapter, the Women’s Health and Justice Initiative, and the New Orleans Women’s Health Clinic) are bracing for the potential landfall of Hurricane Gustav,
which is currently projected to hit the Louisiana coast on Monday or Tuesday at a category 4 or 5. Voluntary evacuation of New Orleans has already begun, and mandatory evacuation could be declared as early as today. INCITE! organizers in New Orleans have made over 700 phone calls to women of color and their families that make up the constituency of the New Orleans Women’s Health Clinic, working to prepare and implement evacuation and safety plans.

Your assistance is urgently needed to help the low-income women of color and their families evacuate safely if need be, stay safe for the duration of the evacuation, and return to the city as soon as possible so as not to fall prey to the pushout that has kept so many folks from being able to return to New Orleans since Katrina. Local organizers are using whatever
resources and funds at their disposal to help women and their families evacuate, bond people being held in Orleans Parish Prison out, and support those who make the choice to stay in whatever way they can.

Your support is urgently needed: financial donations of any size are needed and would be greatly appreciated.

Donations online are preferred because we can more quickly send the funds to our folks in New Orleans.

You can send your donation to INCITE online by going to this website:


Click the Donation button

Put New Orleans in the “Purpose” line

Or you can write a check directly to WHJI and send it to:

PO Box 51325
New Orleans , LA 70151

This money will go directly to supporting the hundreds of low income women of color that are the constituency of the New Orleans Women’s Health

Once again, the particular vulnerability of low-income women of color and single female-headed households (including folks with disabilities, seniors, undocumented immigrant women, and incarcerated women) has been erased in the face of disaster and overlooked in the days leading up to the storm. With few resources, facing challenges and concerns for their
families of their own, INCITE! New Orleans and WHJI have stepped in to fill the gap. Please send all your support, solidarity, sisterhood and
strength their way, and join us in hoping for the safety and well-being of the people who are already suffering from Gustav in Cuba, Jamaica,
and Haiti, and willing the storm to subside or veer off safely before it strikes the Gulf Coast .

We will keep you posted as things develop.


Comment by hannahjs

thanks for the info, hannah!

Comment by dj shiva

we just started http://www.gustavsolidarity.org in an attempt to act as a portal for progressive and radical activists responding to the hurricane…

please check it out, spread the word if you can… thanks for all that all of you do!

Comment by brian

[…] Hannah Sassaman has a list of ways to help with Gustav. […]

Pingback by Hurricane Gustav Resources

more from the houma nation…

Message from Brenda Dardar Robichaux, the Principal Chief of the United Houma Nation (a State recognized Tribe with communities within Terreboone and Lafourche parish).


About 20 of my family and friends has chosen to ride out Hurricane Gustav with us at our home in Raceland. Our home is on a high ridge right across from Bayou Lafourche. Last night was a relatively calm night with little wind and rain. But that soon changed. We lost electricity at 6:05 AM and are using batteries and a generator to stay in touch with what is happening throughout our communities. The wind has picked up considerably here to about 85 MPH. Some of us are sitting on the back porch watching in amazement how huge oak trees can bend and not break while magnolia tree branches fall. Others are glued to the TV listening intently for word of where Gustav is headed and the impact he is having. The lastest update is my worst fear for the Houma People as it is learned that he is approaching the bayous in Terrebonne and Lafourche parish. I feel we have done our best to make sure everyone has evacuated safely. The rest is out of our hands.

Hurricane Katrina and Rita left Plaquemine and St. Bernard Parishes with barely a home left standing or liveable. It has been a challenge to assist our People in these communities when there is nothing left to start with. Some are still living in FEMA trailers, with family and friends and a few are finally returning to a home. Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes have been on the road to recovery for the past 3 years with lives just getting back to normal. My fear for the past three years has been “What if Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes suffered total devestation as Plaquemine and St. Bernard Parishes? These are the communities with the highest concentration of Houma People. How would we recover knowing the challenges we still face in Plaquemine and St. Bernard?” I am paralized in fear that this is what is happening. The great people of the Houma Nation that I am so honored to represent, who have faced many challenges over the years are about to face one of our greatest challenges.

As I sit and write the winds are blowing and Gustav is approaching. I pray for protection, strength and courage to face what lies ahead.

United Houma Nation
20986 Highway 1
Golden Meadow, LA 70357
Office: (985) 537-8867
Fax: (985) 537-8812
Email: bdr@unitedhoumanation.org

Comment by hannahjs

Thanks to all for your links. Check out http://breitbart.wordpress.com — ask Anderson Cooper to stay in the Gulf to report on the need to rebuild in Houma and other areas west of NOLA. We don’t need one more big TV journalist at the RNC, and we do need the country to connect directly to folks in the Gulf.

Comment by Hannah Sassaman

Good to have bumped onto your blog and met you.

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