My hometown is a poor little place (pop @450) in the swamps of North Louisiana, located in one of the poorest parishes in the state. The main employer is the school system and it seems to be employing less people each year. What once, not too long ago, was a 1A football powerhouse no longer has a football team. People tend to move to where the jobs are.
My little town is usually not a destination, but a place to pass through on the way to Baton Rouge or Monroe. The closest place with both a Wal-Mart and a McDonald's is 30 miles away -- a blessing depending on how you look at it.
But to my little town they come from all over South Louisiana and South Mississippi. Katrina refugees. The First Methodist Church, alone, is sheltering 50 people.
This is happening in towns large and small throughout the more fortunate parts of Louisiana and Mississippi and throughout the South. Hundreds of thousands of people need food, water and shelter and these churches and communities are doing what they can -- which does not include employment. These people not only lost their homes, many now have no source of income. Katrina took care of that, too.
As Federal relief and recovery efforts mature, many will probably be re-located to military bases and temporary mobile home villages. But for now, they are depending on us to help them and we will do what we can.
Today is Hurricane Katrina: Blog for Relief Day. Thanks to Hugh Hewitt and NZ Bear and Glenn Reynolds for coordinating this.
Find out more at TTLB Katrina Relief and Instapundit's roundup page
You can make contributions at Katrina Relief: Log Your Contribution
I encourage contributions to The Salvation Army and Operation Katrina Soldiers Relief Fund
More updates here and here.