Hurricane relief group finds someone to help
At long last, it appears Baldwin City's efforts to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina will be up close and personal. A young mother of a 2-year-old girl who have stayed in various relief centers recently moved to the area.
"We were very fortunate to cross paths with this young lady who is looking to rebuild her life in our community," said Robin Bayer, secretary of the Baldwin City Cares Foundation which was formed in September to aid hurricane relief. "We hope to get her settled in time for her first Baldwin City holiday season.
"Those who volunteered their time and resources can make a tremendous difference in the life of our two newest citizens," Bayer said.
Bayer said the woman, whose name is being withheld for privacy reasons, and her daughter found their way to Baldwin through relatives that live in the area. They have been living with the relatives temporarily.
"She has expressed gratitude for the kindness she received by members of the community even before she became aware of the resources of the foundation and has expressed a desire to reside permanently in the community because she believes it is a great environment in which to raise her daughter," he said. "The foundation and the generous members of the community will help her to secure an apartment and will work with the federal and state agencies to identify and fulfill the basic needs for the young lady to build her life anew within this caring community."
It was by chance that the woman found out about the local relief efforts. She had made her way to Baldwin after her home and possessions in Covington, La., were destroyed by Katrina in August. In a conversation with a Baldwin resident about how she came to Baldwin, she was put in touch with the foundation, which is spearheaded by Ken and Diane Wagner.
"Immediately after the hurricane, the community responded forcefully with offers of assistance including cash, furniture, clothing and other valuable services," said Bayer. "The foundation is now asking those offers be brought forward in order that we all might make a tremendous difference in the lives of two new members of our community."
Donations of cash can be made to the Baldwin City Cares Foundation in care of Baldwin State Bank. To help with other needs, contact the Rev. Pam Morrison and the First United Methodist Church at 594-6612.