Real People Hurricane Relief

Real People Relief is for individuals, families and groups who wish to help a person or family directly, with no "middle man" "Be The Change" Ghandi "I pray that I may not be tempted, by indifference or selfishness to withhold from others the help I have received." Author Unknown to me

Saturday, November 04, 2006


Debbie C; Bill
Email: -
Location: - I lived in Waveland, MS. Currently living in a FEMA camper in Kiln, MS. I don't know where I will be in a year, but would like to be in a home of my own.
Number in Household: - Currently because of limited space there is just my husband, Bill, age 60 and myself, age 48. My daughter Melissa, age 20 is staying with my brother in WV and my oldest daughter Samantha, age 23 and her two children Cassie, age 5 and Christopher, age 3 are staying with a friend in another camper in Waveland, MS.

Situation: My husband, my daughter, and myself were in an apartment in Waveland, MS when the hurricane hit. My husband had just gotten out of the hospital the day before after having triple by-pass surgery. We swam out of the apartment when the water was up to our necks. My husband broke the wires holding his breastbone together and lost all his postsurgery meds. He had to be evacuated to Jackson on Wednesday and my daughter and I were taken to West Point on Friday by a church group working with the Red Cross. From there my husband's son came from Kansas City, MO and took us to their home. We finally got a FEMA camper in the last part of March so that I could go back to work.
Current Living Arrangements: - FEMA Trailer
Help: We have received rental assistance from FEMA while in Missouri, also money to replace some things that we lost from FEMA and Red Cross.
Computer Supplies: paper and ink HP92 and 93
Cleaning Supplies: Windex, Dishwashing liquid, Laundry detergent, etc.
Household Supplies: sheets-queen size, towels, garbage bags
Clothing mens size 42x30 pants 2X shirts
womens size 14 pants size L shirts mostly jeans and dark colors
Stores you shop at: Walmart and Kmart

I was reading about the insurance hikes and how it seems that they are taking advantage of everyone. I have another one for you. I contacted the Public Service Commission about this and they say they are not over this particular utility. We moved to a Fema trailer in March 2006 after having been in Missouri for a little over 6 months due to losing our residence in Katrina.
When we finally got them to place a camper on property so that I could go back to my job, we went to get water connected along with electric, etc. The water company made us sign a contract saying that even if we moved we would pay for water for 2 years. Fema moved us to a mobile home in January 2007. I paid the water that was owed when we moved. But now they are billing me for months that I didn't live there.
Yes I signed a contract but the situation was if you didn't sign the contract, you didn't get your water turned on and Fema wouldn't have left the camper there with no water turned on. That was one of the things you have to do before they turn the camper over to you to live in.
How fair is this? It is another way to take advantage of those that are trying to piece their life back together. I may get sued over this or have it put against my credit but I am not paying for 14 months of water which I am not using.
Hopefully they don't put it against me because I am trying to buy a house so that I can get out of Fema assisted living. But regardless I don't think you should have to pay for something that you are not using.

Sorry I didn't answer sooner, but have been sick. I thought it was a cold but it settled into my chest and had to get antibiotics. I think it was pnuemonia again. Didn't have an xray. Can't afford it. But this is like the third time since Katrina. And I never had respiratory problems before. Makes me wonder.
These mobile homes come furnished so I really don't need anything furniture wise. I have been trying to find some sheets, queen size, and full. I have one for each bed but when you have to constantly take them off, wash them, and put them back they wear out pretty fast. And they weren't new to begin with.
My husband takes medicine for high blood pressure, which they just doubled his dosage right before we moved because he was very stressed out over the situation we were in and it caused his blood pressure to soar. He also takes lasix(don't know if I spelled that right). To prevent fluid build up. And aspirin. But he is on MS medicaid so he doesn't have a problem getting his meds. He just is constantly in pain because when we swam out he broke wires holding his breast bone in place and they didn't mend and are loose.
Thanks for being happy for me. That is what I want. Most people think you want their pity, but they are totally wrong. I just want someone to help me celebrate every little victory because that is another step to a normal life that seemed to disappear after Katrina.

Hey Leslie,
Just wanted to send out a few lines to let you know what is going on with us. They finally moved us to a 3 bedroom mobile home. It is in a different county and not where I am familiar with but I am learning and I feel like I am in a mansion after being in that camper for 9 months. I am a little closer to work and that helps with the gas. And I can actually sit in a real chair now. Not a booth. It feels WONDERFUL. I never thought that would be that important to me. But then a lot of things have changed. All in all we are a lot happier to be in something that is bigger and has actual rooms. So for now that is what is going on with us.
Thanks for being a good listener and a caring person. It means the world to us.
Well still hanging in. Haven't heard anything about help in moving even though we've called them practically every day. They keep saying I'm forwarding it to my supervisor. I am not ready for Christmas. I really feel like crawling in bed and staying there. But I can't. If it weren't for the kids I don't know what my life would be. Thanks for listening.
It is 20 days til Christmas. It has been 15+ months since things were forever changed by Katrina. I keep hoping and praying that things will get better, that life will once again regain some normalcy. I would love to sit on a real couch or chair, take a bubble bath in a bathtub, have a family dinner at a real table, and a million other things that once I took for granted. But never again will I just assume that these things will just be there. Because in the blink of an eye they can all be snatched away. I think that everyone thinks because so much time has passed that everything is normal now and they are tired of hearing about Katrina. And all the kindness has run out. This morning I received from my "friend" that had allowed us to put a FEMA camper on their property, a letter informing me that I have until December 15th at 8:00 p.m. to vacate the premises or a padlock would be placed on the gate thru which we enter and exit. I called my housing advisor and was told by them there was nothing they could do. I called the 800 FEMA number and was told to call trailer maintenance, which I did and they are trying to find somewhere to put us. Hopefully that will happen before we are evicted. But this is definitely not normal. When will it end?
As I told you we have been working with a housing advisor from FEMA and in the last 5 or 6 months I have talked to numerous offices within FEMA. Every time I call to find out if anything is happening they give me another number to call so I repeat the information to someone new because nobody knows anything about us from one number to the next. It is really getting frustrating. I know they are supposed to be helping people with disabilities because of a lawsuit, but I applied for a bigger and ADA compliant mobile home in November of 2005 and am still in a camper. My husband is having a lot of health issues right now. He is in a lot of pain from his breastbone wiggling around all the time. The dr. told him the operation to fix it is VERY risky, even more so than the original surgery. My vehicle is starting to need this and need that and requiring money I don't have. But I have to have it to get back and forth to work because we cannot make it without my income. But driving 220+ miles a week will take their toll. I know that it is hard for people who have not been there to understand, but I really sometimes feel that we are being punished for surviving.
As for Christmas I really only wish the children to have a few things to replace everything they lost. Cassie is 5 and wears size 6 clothes(pants and shirts) and she loves Dora the Explorer and anything pink. Christopher is 3 and wears 5T or 5/6 clothes and loves Sponge Bob. When we were all together, I had a double rocking chair that I used to rock both of them in. Now Christopher asks me if we are working on getting a rocking chair house. That is his idea of a place big enough for us all.

11/9 Update:
We have been working with a housing advisor from FEMA for about 4 or 5 months and as of yet nothing. They were going to see about putting us in a mobile home rather than a camper so that my family could get back together. It's bad enough losing everything and now my family is part of the healing process that can't be started because we are not together. We are on the property of a friend that I work with and it was ok to start but they have started in the last few months showing that they obviously don't want us here. I have tried to find something to rent but the prices here (if you can find anything) are outrageous. If I had one wish it would be for a home of my own where I have room for my family and my husband could be at peace and not constantly have the stress which is very bad for his heart. I am sinking in depression and trying very hard not to. I am very grateful that we survived and I know we were being looked after, but it seems with as much time that has passed something could resemble normal life.

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