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Most of the evacuees who abandoned New Orleans have arrived Houston’s Astrodome with nothing except their IDs or driver’s licenses. This gentleman was in same situation: a trash bag containing some clothes on his back, and a jungle of messages at his front. Phone numbers and handwritten pleas seeking lost family members covered two black canvas message boards. Torn cardboard boxes displayed names of those searching for loved ones. The public address system carried such messages as, "Helen: Richard is looking for you." Eleven thousands refugees may end up with that much messages. They lost their houses, their vehicles, their employments. They even lost their loved ones in chaos.

People desperately tried to make contact with someone, anyone before lining up for new clothes, personal hygiene products and showers or "comfort kits" holding soap, toothbrushes, washcloths and other toiletries.

According to the BBC, Texas has faced the largest volume of refugees, currently taking in more than 239,000. The state has been able to house thousands in large venues in the city of Houston. The exodus has overwhelmed some areas. Hotel rooms are booked up for miles around, and state authorities have taken over stadiums, military barracks and other venues to provide shelter.


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The good news is, in Houston alone, some 1,200 evacuees moved yesterday from the Astrodome into apartments with six-month leases. Such centers would be clearinghouses for information, providing neighborhood-by-neighborhood details about floodwaters and cleanup efforts, utilities and phone service. The centers would also function as registration sites, to keep track of who is where.

Houston intends to establish a toll-free number providing daily updates on information like the condition of the streets and giving residents opportunities to communicate with city officials.

I wish all the best luck to this man, and to every one who is victim of Hurricane Katrina, that they won’t give up the hope. Hope it not a remedy to cure their current pains, but it helps them to withstand the pain longer.




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Additional Photos by Ngy Thanh (ngythanh) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 471 W: 125 N: 2332] (8458)
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