Role of Faith-Based and Community Organizations in Providing Relief and Recovery Services After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Case Studies


The case studies were designed to provide qualitative information using in-depth, field-based exploration to understand what motivated the responses of the organizations under study, how they related to the larger web of disaster response, and whether the efforts of these generally smaller or nontraditional responders will be sustainable over time or replicated in future disasters. Six of the eight cases were in Louisiana (two in New Orleans, two in Baton Rouge, and two in southwestern Louisiana), and two were in Mississippi in the areas on the Gulf Coast directly hit by Hurricane Katrina.

The cases were selected for their variation in location and organizational type and the types of assistance provided, and because they might have important stories to tell about collaborations crafted, the uniqueness of the response, or the relationships developed to larger disaster relief networks. As such, the findings raise important issues about what types of responses are likely, under what conditions, from smaller and nontraditional responders, and when and how to connect these organizations with the larger system of disaster response and human service delivery in planning for future disasters.

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