UPS Delivers Home, Hope to Treaudo Family
Nearing the 5 year anniversary of the landfall of Hurricane Katrina, hundreds of families are still living in temporary homes and trailers in the Greater New Orleans Area. However, one of these families, The Treaudos, has recently moved into their new permanent home, a special delivery courtesy of UPS.
For nearly five years the Treaudos had been away from their home on Virgilian Street in New Orleans, evacuating during Katrina to live with family in Friendship, Texas and then Denver Colorado, until finally returning to New Orleans to reside in a temporary FEMA trailer.
The Treaudos returned to New Orleans to care for elder relatives who were devastated not only by the physical damage to their beloved city, but also by the loss of family that had surrounded them all their lives. The Treaudos also moved back for their daughter Jalesa, so she would be able to graduate from high school in June 2006 surrounded by the community who had supported her all her life. In Royce Treaudo’s words, “my children wanted to come back…. That’s why I came back. They love New Orleans and they can’t see going anywhere else.” It was these small joys of family, friends and community that gave Treaudos the strength to keep fighting for their home in New Orleans for the past 4 and a half years.
Recognizing that like the Treaudos, nearly 1,000 families in the Greater New Orleans region are still in FEMA trailers or temporary housing, UPS committed to partner with United Way’s No Place Like Home Campaign. UPS generously donated all of the funds needed to sponsor the rebuilding of the Treaudo’s home. They also volunteered to get the work done to complete the rebuild. On Saturday, July 24th UPS gathered over 50 UPS volunteers and worked tirelessly on five homes throughout New Orleans. The day culminated with the completion of the Treaudos’ house, with volunteers, media, family and friends gathering to welcome the family home.
This isn’t the first time UPS has aided victims of Hurricane Katrina. The UPS Foundation initially donated $1.25 million toward relief efforts in 2005. Since then, UPS has donated a total of more than $2 million and countless volunteer hours to recovery efforts.
UPS has also committed to continuing to help serve the New Orleans Community recover through United Way’s No Place Like Home Campaign, providing an employee, as a loaned volunteer, to help a United Way local non-profit partner maximize efficiency in rebuilding efforts. The volunteer employee will develop new warehouse and inventory control processes that will increase capacity to accept in-kind contributions of building materials and tools that would have otherwise needed to be turned away. This expertise, provided by UPS, could result in hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of in-kind contributions being put to use rebuilding more houses and returning families home.