The Lower 9th Ward Village, a post-Katrina nonprofit community center, is a work in progress. The Village vision is to become a multipurpose, multi-use facility that caters to the community in general, with emphasis on providing services, skills training and recreational activities to youth and the elderly. It is currently utilized as a community meeting space, housing for volunteers and space for social events and artistic activities. Culinary arts classes and training in all aspects of restaurant operations is soon to be launched. Other goals include a full sized gym with basketball court, a computer lab, a professional audio-visual recording and photography studio, and a full-service on-site café.
To make it happen, the Village is debuting the first of a series of fundraisers. This “Jazzy Affair and Dinner” will feature pro bono performances by veteran Charmaine Neville and newcomer Davelle Crawford, who, at 22, already has four recordings out, has appeared as guest artist on more than 20 other recordings and has been hailed as the crown prince of New Orleans music. Guest performers will be Blame Sally, an all-female band from California. Dinner will be contributed by local New Orleans based restaurants.
Tickets cost $10 for the three-band concert or $18 for the concert plus dinner. RSVPs go for $30. The benefit will occur on Wednesday, Oct. 29, at the Howlin Wolf, 907 South Peters St., New Orleans. Doors open for dinner at 8 p.m.; show time is 9 p.m. For more information, cal (504) 228-5927, (504) 861-5017 or (504) 522-WOLF or go to www.lower9thwardvillage.org.
Horns for Guns Nov. 1
Louisiana Weekly – Due to the Hurricane Gustav evacuation, the two Horns For Guns kick-off events and gun buybacks, originally scheduled for Sept. 6, have now been rescheduled for Saturday, Nov. 1, All Souls Day. The two events will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Tremé Community Center, 1600 St. Phillip St. at North Villere Street, and Progressive Baptist Church, 1214 S. Robertson St. at Clio Street in Central City. Horns for Guns is an initiative of St. Anna’s Church.
For every gun turned at the events, an area child or youth will receive musical instruments or tools of graphic commercial arts, along with a full year of training and mentoring in the creative and commercial arts, along with access to a variety of health, wellness and resiliency programs and workshops for youth and their families.
Housing assistance for families displaced by Ike
Louisiana Weekly – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Louisiana Recovery Authority (LRA) have announced a rental assistance program that will provide temporary rental payments and case management services to help thousands of families who were displaced by Hurricane Ike. The program is slated to begin Nov. 1 to help these families find intermediate housing as they rebuild their lives.
Initially, HUD will provide full rental assistance to approved families. Beginning May 1, 2009, families will be responsible for paying $50 per month. Every month thereafter, the family’s portion of the rent will increase in increments of $50 until the program ends in March 2010.
Families in need of assistance must register with FEMA by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or online at www.FEMA.gov. HUD will use its network of local public housing agencies to administer the program where families reside.