Biloxi/Hurricane Katrina Trip Update Part 2

The crew in Mississippi has continued to enjoy beautiful weather and offer multiple methods of outreach to the communities in Southern Mississippi affected by Hurricane Katrina. We continued home visits, as well as home repairs with Habitat for Humanity. Several students from the Schools of Nursing and Social Work set up a make-shift clinic at the local volunteer fire department in Pearlington, Miss. Students checked blood sugars and took blood pressures to screen for hypertension, and they also did some patient teaching and provided social services to the 12 residents who came to the clinic. On Wednesday afternoon the entire group took the bus to New Orleans. We toured the areas of the city that were devastated when the levies broke and flooded the city. It was an eye-opening experience for the group to see the continued devastation and destruction left by the storm. It was a great opportunity to see the more televised aspects of the storm as they are now. Students were struck by the remaining amount of work and reconstruction New Orleans faces in the future. We all sampled traditional New Orleans fare at dinner in the French Quarter. It was a great evening!
We have one more day of work tomorrow and will, then, be boarding the bus. We plan to drive through the night and will arrive in Chapel Hill early Saturday morning. It’s been a great trip!

Biloxi/Hurricane Katrina Trip Update

School of Nursing students and faculty are on-site in Mississippi, assisting the Hurricane Katrina-stricken community during Spring Break. Here’s an update:

The 30 participants comprised of students and faculty from the SON, School of Public Health and School of Social Work arrived in Biloxi, Miss., safely after a 15-hour bus ride. Students and faculty began work in the surrounding communities affected by Hurricane Katrina the following morning. Groups participated in a variety of outreach activities, including home health visits, construction with Habitat for Humanity and volunteering in a free medical clinic. Students were shocked to find the communities still in dire need of assistance and have found great satisfaction in helping those in need. For example, one group helped a family who had been living in a FEMA trailer since the storm move into a house they could now call home. The students helping the family felt a great sense of accomplishment and pride in serving this family and others like it. Students from each school have particularly enjoyed the interdisciplinary interaction during home visits that has proved beneficial in providing a more holistic approach to care. As we continue to get to know the community of Biloxi we look forward to the people we’ll meet and the impact we’ll have.

18 Donors Gift $4,300: Katrina Relief Trip a “GO”

Thanks to the generosity of 18 alumni and friends of the School of Nursing (SON) who responded to our call for help, Carolina student and faculty volunteers will climb on the bus headed for the Mississippi Gulf Coast on March 9. Over the course of the week working in Biloxi and Purlington, they will rehabilitate dwellings, conduct health assessment surveys, and assist with health care needs of the elderly and other at-risk populations. The group, representing the Schools of Nursing, Public Health and Social Work, will return to Chapel Hill on March 15. This is the third and final year for the Katrina Relief Service Trip, which has made a substantial impact on the lives of many survivors.

Donors to the SON’s Community Partnerships and Practice Fund to make this trip possible are Paul Chused, Valerie Ann Stafford-Fox, Alpha Alpha Chapter/Sigma Theta Tau, Inc., Linda Trembath Reeder, Harriet Walker Buss, Jo-Anne Trowbridge Martin, Diane Snakenburg Gordon, Anonymous, Sharon Hill Price, Rebecca Dodson, Margaret McCain, Ann Marie Polk, Melissa Dixon LeVine, Carolyn Cook Spalding, Denise Taylor Darden, Shelby Dunivant, Anne Fishel, and Nancy B. Freeman. Individual gifts ranged from $25 to $1,000, demonstrating how important grass roots support can be.

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