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alternative media | katrina aftermath

Indy Media Activists: Support Katrina Evacuees in the Puget Sound Area

Assistance is needed to help create a multimedia website that will also serve to help reunite people who have been separated since the hurricanes. Independent media support is needed to help record audio and video interviews with evacuees and build global awareness and support for Lagniappe Caravan and hurricane survivors in the Puget Sound and all around the nation.
Hello all,

This letter concerns a project here in the Puget Sound area that requires assistance and support. Please read on. There will be a meeting for independent media support for this project in Seattle Dec. 16 or 17th. Please respond ASAP if you would like to attend.

Since Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, New Orleans has remained in a state of devastation in many areas, especially poor and black neighborhoods. The city is in danger of losing its cultural diversity and character as a result of the plans of big developers to buy up land that poor people cannot afford to remediate and turn NOLA into a theme park version of itself!!

In some neighborhoods such as the Lower Ninth Ward, many residents have been able to remain and retain a sense of community, albeit changed, through the support and solidarity of organizations such as Common Ground Relief. Common Ground, founded by former Black Panther Malik Rahim, is a volunteer mutual aid project providing food, clothing, and medical support as well as helping residents save their homes from bulldozers by organizing volunteers into mold abatement teams.
Volunteers and activists are stepping up where the government has failed the people of New Orleans. (  http://commongroundrelief.org)

As many as 5,000 New Orleanians are displaced to Seattle and the Puget Sound. Many of these people are living in FEMA funded housing, but the assistance will run out. Evacuees have struggled to find enough work, and many have not found work. We all know about the northwest job market! Many of these people have not returned to New Orleans since the hurricanes to see if there are any pieces they can pick up from their lives, anything to salvage. Some would very much like to go, but cannot afford to.

Feeling this need, and inspired by the work of Common Ground in New Orleans, a small group of evacuees in the Seattle area have started a Common Ground chapter in Seattle to organize mutual aid with the many displaced people here. Last fall, they sent a caravan of NOLA residents back to New Orleans, where some of them remained with assistance from Common Ground, but those who wished to return to Seattle were able to do so. Lagniappe/Social Justice Caravan is returning to New Orleans in February with more evacuees who wish to visit or return to New Orleans. Some of these people are still searching for lost family members and friends. Some are home-owners who are in danger of losing their homes and property if they do not receive assistance with mold abatement. As you can imagine, it is frustrating for someone to be stuck in rental housing in Seattle with no work, unable to return and save their home, and cut off from their community, family, and support network!

This organization provides a critical need that is not being filled in any other way but by grassroots volunteer organizing. A call has been put out for people who are in solidarity to get on board.

Assistance is needed to help create a multimedia website that will also serve to help reunite people who have been separated since the hurricanes. Independent media support is needed to help record audio and video interviews with evacuees and build global awareness and support for Lagniappe Caravan and hurricane survivors in the Puget Sound and all around the nation.

I have volunteered to help with this effort. I would greatly appreciate your help. While I do possess media skills, my greatest skill is organizing, and I do not possess good recording or editing equipment. If you are skilled at organizing, website development, audio or video recording and editing, or if you have equipment that can be used, please contact me at khaos(at)riseup.net. If you would like to help with website development or get involved with general organizing, outreach or fundraising please contact Bernadette 206-768-5100. She is the key Seattle organizer.

We are planning an independent media meeting in Seattle for this project sometime between Dec. 15-17. If you are interested in getting involved or helping in any way with the media effort, please contact me or Vincent ASAP and let us know if you can attend a meeting during this time and which of these dates (esp. Sat the 16th or Sun the 17th) would work best for you!

Thank-you. your offers of assistance, support, solidarity or equipment are greatly appreciated, and your questions are welcome.

Khaos

khaos(at)riseup.net

Seattle Common Ground / Lagniappe Caravan
 http://seattle.commongroundcollective.org

Common Ground Relief in NOLA
 http://www.commongroundrelief.org

Here is Vincent's original call for support to which I responded:

PLEASE FORWARD AND DISTRIBUTE WIDELY


november 2006



friends,


my name is vincent scotti eirene, i live in
pittsburgh, pa. and am with blast furnace radio an internet radio station that has been on line for the last six years. i have been to baghdad for the first anniversary of the war. and most recently our radio journalists have been to new orleans four times since hurricane katrina. besides media work we have arranged so that the food coop in jackson, miss. provide open air kitchens with organic, fresh produce. facilitate getting funds for bottled water for the lower 9th ward, including water filters and supplying new plastic containers for filtered water.

*** audio interviews

 http://www.radio4all.net/proginfo.php?id=18873
 http://www.radio4all.net/proginfo.php?id=19665
 http://www.radio4all.net/proginfo.php?id=19750
 http://www.radio4all.net/proginfo.php?id=19749

*** video interviews

 http://www.youtube.com/blastfurnacepgh

i was recently called by folk with common ground collective and asked to coming up with some alternative media for the 5,000 katrina refugees in seattle and there efforts to return home to new orleans and re-build there lives. the caravan will leave seattle febuary 13th. there is much work to do.

first things first is to assist the seattle katrina refugees in building there website
 http://seattle.commongroundcollective.org

the website would announce the refugees plan to return to the homes in new orleans and the support needed for this 2,6000 mile journey. the website would also be a place for audio and video interviews. interviews for folk to tell the story of there relocation, the experience in seattle and there desire to go home.finally the website will be used as a vehicle to locate seattle katrina refugees...this information has been withheld by governmental and non-governmental organizations.

second, to do some audio / video interviews and post them on the internet. examples being, independent media centers, radio4all.net, google video and you tube, so individuals and internet radio, pirate radio and fm stations can use these audio clips.

it is hard to organize this from a distance, over the internet and phone. lets do what we can together and then i will contact one of the key refugee organizers in seattle.

finally to do press work with national and international media, this is
needed later.

to talk to our key contact in seattle you may contact bernadette
206-768-5100

vincent scotti eirene'
blast furnace radio
 http://notowar.com
1-888-NOTOWAR