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community building | katrina aftermath

Update on Mayday DC relief effort in New Orleans

Infoshop News
September 12 -- Imagine a situation where the military, FEMA, and the
Red Cross are sending people needing help over to a tent set up by
anarchists and you start to get a picture of what is happening in New
Orleans, at least on the Algiers side of the river. Volunteers with
Mayday DC set up a wellness center in front of the Masjib Bilal Mosque
on Friday and since then have treated hundreds of people for ailments
ranging from high blood pressure to dog bites. The latter is caused by
the growing number of feral packs of dogs left behind by the
evacuation.

Over a thousand people are left in the Algiers neighborhood--they've
have been doing what they can to survive and rebuild. FEMA and the
military have a presence in the neighborhood, but they aren't exactly
doing much. President Bush spent the night on an amphibious assault
carrier in clear view of the people doing work out of the mosque, but
they don't report signs of any presidential photo-ops in their
neighborhood.

The wellness tent, dubbed the "Mayday Mutual Aid Medical Station," has
helped around 55-60 people a day during the weekend and around 100
today. The station has been busy mostly in the morning and early
afternoon. The station shuts down in the evening when the curfew takes
place.

The Mayday DC relief effort at the Masjib Bilal Mosque has grown to six
people, thanks to the arrival today of the Cafe Manowaj truck from
Washington, DC and another vehicle full of supplies from Asheville,
North Carolina. Jamie "Bork" Loughner--an organizer with Mayday
DC--reports that the military came by with three truckloads filled with
supplies.

I asked Bork how people could help and what kind of volunteers are
needed. She said that they need more medical people. The neighborhood
needs volunteers with construction skills to help with the clean-up and
new construction. One thing they don't need are tourists, especially
people who drop off clothes, pose for photos showing how good they are,
and then run back home. Bork stressed that they are getting too many
clothes and not enough of other important supplies. The Mayday crew
also
asked that people NOT donate to the Red Cross, as that organization is
corrupt and has been impeding relief efforts. Volunteers are also
needed
to rescue animals.

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