Volunteers addressing growing needs as shutdown heads into third month

Updated: May. 2, 2020 at 1:12 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - At Holy Angels Convent on St. Claude Avenue, New Orleans city council member Kristen Gisleson Palmer and dozens of volunteers delivered prepared meals and grocery bags to those struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To lighten spirit, they also brought in a DJ to remind people of the sounds of Jazz Fest.

Palmer says since beginning their efforts over a month ago, the needs of the people are constantly changing.

“Yeah it keeps changing, and then we’re also adding locations,” said Palmer.

It’s really awesome that we try to find churches within communities that aren’t touched, and so we’ve been adding different locations in addition to this. And I think it’s a more humane way of doing this so people can actually walk if they don’t have a vehicle. They don’t have to go too far, they don’t have to wait in ridiculous lines. And look, we still run out of food. We still have long lines, but we can knock them out pretty fast. And I think it’s a smart way, it’s really a New Orleans way to just kind of hit different neighborhoods."

Palmer says they’re also adding new partners, like the newly formed Culture Aid Nola, a collaboration of several non profit groups that formed to feed and also help those who may not have access to typical assistance.

“A lot of homes don’t have broad band internet access.” said founder Erica Chomsky Adelson.

So we’ve got flyers on Medicaid access navigation, reliable verified health information, we’re doing on farmers markets who take snap benefits, food safety, what grants you qualify for, and we’re just trying to get that information into the hands of the people."

Chomsky Adelson says they’re already working with council members in several other districts and have a sleight if other initiatives planned for the future and it’s all about keeping the New Orleans spirit alive through helping others.

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