Phoenix of New Orleans (PNOLA) is an organization dispersing volunteers to homes that have been funded for now mostly finish work type projects. Such projects would be finish coats of paint on walls, hanging kitchen cabinets, installing flooring, to name a few. Our group of five (Martha Cotton, Lorraine Dee, Joan Faulkner, Rick Lindequist, and George Thomas) will work this entire week on a home in the Center City area owned by two sisters, April and Lola Turner. It is actually a family home, built as a double wide “shotgun”, but now connected as one home. This is a typical New Orleans style. The home is only blocks from the untouched Garden District area. All of the homes in the entire Center City area were flooded and rendered uninhabitable. Some of the homes in their neighborhood are now fully renovated and occupied, but many are still boarded up even after 6-1/2 years. Others were demolished and now vacant lots appear thruout the neighborhood. It is true urban blight. For the first two days we have done mainly finish interior painting, as well as scraping and sanding some of the exterior of the house which badly needs a new paint job. We are also going to be assisting our supervisor, Gil, an Americorps employee who is from Monterey, CA area in installing a laminate floor in what is to be a family room area. We hope that our work will help the sisters and their extended family fully return to their home before the summer.
Written by the PNOLA Crew