Day 1 of our New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity build was awesome. Governor Bobby Jindal and Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu joined us in hammering a few nails and speaking to assembled crowd and press. Jim Pate, the New Orleans Habitat Executive Director was terrifically helpful, as were all the Habitat folks who supervised the entire LAF team as we spread out to help build four houses.
It was truly a proud day for the Foundation and for myself. I was proud of our LAF staff that traveled all the way from Austin with enthusiasm and unfailing energy. And I was especially proud to be able to announce that the LAF was donating $50,000 to New Orleans Area Habitat. It feels great to be able to support organizations that do so much good for so many people.
Not a lot of people know that after Katrina, the LAF sent more than $500,000 in aid to the Gulf Coast region to help cancer survivors continue to get their treatments as well as the basic necessities of life. I like to think that we helped survivors when they needed it the most and that’s a great feeling.
Now let me tell you about a great lady we met today, Shirley Bird. Shirley is a 15-year cancer survivor and was the first breast cancer patient to receive a bone marrow transplant at Tulane. She adopted a little girl a few years ago and is a social worker and clearly someone with a good heart who cares about giving back to the people around her. That’s why it was all the more meaningful to myself and the LAF staff that we were building on behalf of folks like Shirley. She will soon be able to buy a New Orleans Area Habitat home, just like the ones we were working on today. We dedicated our efforts to her today and wish her and her daughter all the best in their new home.
Check back tomorrow for the Day 2 update.