AN SSBBWs WORLD
Information and rants about living in the real world as an SSBBW
As SSBBWs, we live in a world built for smaller people. Each day we face challenges to fit in, or even to just fit. While education and information are powerful tools, our best resource is each other. Let us know your tips or rants about this subject at firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Each month we will profile an SSBBW to help inspire those SSBBWs who haven't yet gotten that they are wonderful, caring, sexy, special people. Click here to read this month's profile of Rhonda, a 41 year old from South Carolina.|
WANT TO FEEL BETTER ABOUT YOURSELF? GIVE TO OTHERS....
Two years ago Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on the Gulf Coast. Millions of people lost their homes and over 1,000 lost their lives. Progress to rebuild this area has been slow. There are 14,000 people living FEMA trailers. Crime is rampant and the murder rate is currently the highest in the US. The suicide rate has risen 300 percent!!
There are people and organizations trying to help, one of these is the St. Bernard Project. The project is working to rebuild homes in St. Bernard Parish one of the hardest hit communities in New Orleans. Since August 2006 they have helped more than 70 families move back home with 22 more on their way. They raise funds, recruit volunteers and put them together to get homes rebuilt.
St. Bernard Parish is an industrious community comprised of middle class and working class families. It is a community of veterans, of people who hold potluck dinners to benefit disaster victims elsewhere, an area where local fishermen and shrimpers give part of their daily catch to the less fortunate. Generations of families lived within blocks of one another. And neighbors could trace their friendships back to their grandparents and beyond.
For most, all savings were tied up in their homes. In the years before Katrina, insurance companies rezoned St Bernard out of the flood plain, so most residents no longer had flood insurance after decades of paying for it. Then Katrina hit, and the people of St Bernard lost everything. Seventy-five percent of families were under- or uninsured.
The first rescue crews into the Parish, five days after the storm, were the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Residents felt abandoned by the government for which they had fought and in which they had believed. From their time in the military, they know the United States can show up in force anywhere on the planet within three days, yet after five days, they had to be rescued by caring folks from another country.
After two weeks, the water was gone as were neighbors, friends, and family, but people wanted to come back. There are no beautiful mountains here. No lakes or beaches. No stunning vistas, yet the residents have endured heartbreak and tribulation in their effort to return. It may seem odd until one meets them and spends a few days in their midst. The community, camaraderie, and courage in St Bernard are something most of the rest of the United States dreams of but cannot find. Having known it, the people of this parish won’t let it go easily. And having known them, we cannot let that happen either.
The St. Bernard Project was recently shown on the Oprah show's Katrina Follow-up.
This fall the St. Bernard Project is hosting the 1st Annual Women’s Build Week. Each day over 100 women volunteers from around the country will rebuild families' that Hurricane Katrina rendered uninhabitable. In addition, the week will honor and celebrate the critical role women leaders are playing in rebuilding the Greater New Orleans Area.
So if this article leaves you wanting to do something more, don't fret. Rejoice though because there is now scientific proof that helping others is a way of helping yourself. That's right, giving, finds a team of researchers at the University of Michigan, reduces mortality and promotes longevity. As well as making you feel good about yourself and life.
For more information about what is going on in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, visit the following sites:
If you want to donate to this cause, visit the St. Bernard Project (http://www.stbernardproject.org/index.html).
Letters to the Editor...
We've received a few letters to the editor lately and would like to post them here. If you have anything to say we'd love to hear from you too, so send us an email.
"I have been large all my life and an SSBBW all of my adult life. Until the internet I always felt so alone. But now thanks to the internet and sites like yours I know that there are others struggling with the same issues I am. Thank you."
Editor's Note : We love to hear that our website is helping others.