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Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana developing long-term recovery plan

Published: Apr. 26, 2021 at 10:25 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Already assisting with short-term recovery, the Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana received a $2.5 million donation to create a master plan for long-term recovery for Calcasieu and Cameron Parishes.

Sara Judson, CEO and President for the foundation, says the donation from Moss Bluff native, and Yahoo co-founder, David Filo and his wife, Angela aims to go “For the people of our area, to rebuild in a more resilient way and have affordable housing and equitable opportunities for as many people as possible.”

The foundation is hoping to come up with solutions to tackle the issues both parishes have faced as a result of the hurricanes.

“We anticipate that a master plan will look at our culture and how we make the most of that and how we build on our assets, whether they are natural assets or also those related to our economic assets,” Judson said.

Already in its initial stages, for the past six to eight weeks, Judson says they have been speaking to local stakeholders involved in tourism, housing, infrastructure, etc. to understand the top priorities for the area.

“We anticipate that with master planning, there will be some creative solutions that can bring some win-wins, not only for people’s quality of life, but also to help reduce risk at the same time.”

Judson anticipates housing will be a priority, but for resident Kristine Barron who was displaced for eight months after the hurricane, she’s hoping for a longer-term solution.

“My oldest, he wants to move away from here due to lack of everything that’s going on,” Barron said. “If everybody can just come together and agree on something to make Louisiana a little bit better than what it is, then that’s what it needs to be.”

The Community Foundation is looking for residents to give input on what their vision for Southwest Louisiana should look like.

To fill out the survey, click HERE.

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