Following Hurricane Ida, New Orleans Saints and Pelicans Owner Gayle Benson announced on Aug. 30 an initial $1 million donation to the Saints and Pelicans Gulf Coast Renewal Fund. Soon after, the NFL and NBA communities joined forces with the Saints and Pelicans in supporting the Gulf Coast Renewal Fund announcing on Sept. 2, that nearly $5 million had been donated in support of the Gulf South region in wake of Hurricane Ida.
On Tuesday, Sept. 14, the team is announcing a second round of funding donations of $850,000 that have been distributed to the following nonprofits serving those directly impacted:
· Bayou Community Foundation
· Covenant House of New Orleans
· Feeding the Gulf Coast
· New Orleans Mission
· Second Harvest Food Bank
· United Houma Nation
On Sept. 3, the team contributed $825,000 to the following nonprofits:
· Greater New Orleans Foundation
· Salvation Army
· World Central Kitchen
· Red Cross
"We are proud to provide direct impact funding to these great charitable organizations and nonprofits doing the hard work to get our community back, but we are not done, we still have a long way to go and our community and region has my commitment that we will be there to help," Benson said. "As our football team continues to prepare for our game at the Carolina Panthers and our Pelicans prepare to start training camp, we will continue to work to lift the spirits of our community and provide direct support to those in need. We are grateful for those who have stepped up and donated to help our community and the surrounding areas."
The renewal fund has also collaborated with the Greater New Orleans Foundation on emergency matching grants, donating a total of $600,000 to the following nonprofits:
· United Way of St. Charles Parish
· United Way of St. John Parish
· YMCA of Greater New Orleans
· Bayouland YMCA
· Junior League of New Orleans Diaper Bank
· Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeast Louisiana
· Northshore Food Bank
· Team Rubicon
· Southeast Louisiana Legal Services
· Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans
· Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Houma
These nonprofits will provide immediate response in the form of essential items and services to those in need following Hurricane Ida.
In addition to direct funding, the Saints and Pelicans have worked closely, communicating daily with local legislative leaders from those areas most impacted in the state of Louisiana.
"We value our relationship with our legislative leaders and have counted on them to give us the direction that we need to make the most focused impact," Benson added. "In particular, our State Senator Cameron Henry has been a great resource in putting us in direct contact with not only legislative leaders but also those supporting relief efforts in Livingston, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. John, St. Charles, St. Bernard as well as Jefferson and Orleans parishes. Our staff continues to work daily trying to provide support such as generators and food in these areas. Our prayers are with everyone personally impacted and I wish to thank Governor Jon Bel Edwards for his tireless leadership during this hurricane."
The team also announced that a portion of the New Orleans Saints 50/50 raffle each week is being contributed to the Gulf Coast Renewal Fund.
For more ways to donate and local resources, visit NewOrleansSaints.com/hurricaneida or to Pelicans.com/hurricaneida.