Life on the Gulf Coast unfortunately means hurricanes. Here in Houston, we know it, we have lived it, and we stand ready to help. Our brothers and sisters in New Orleans and across southeast Louisiana sustained major damage Sunday after the Category 4 Hurricane Ida ripped through the area. The Jewish Federation of Greater Houston, Jewish Family Service (JFS), and the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center (The J) are proud to be able to again unite to organize a community response to meet the evolving needs.

More than a million people are left without power. This outage is expected to last a minimum of 21 days, but could last six weeks. The outage is also hindering full assessment of the extent of storm damage. Evacuees have been asked not to return to the city due to the utility situation, and others who are currently there may need to leave. Many have come here to Houston, and we welcome them with open arms.  
FOR THOSE SEEKING HELP

Jewish Family Service
If you know someone from New Orleans who is here in Houston and in need of assistance, please have them fill out the intake form. Someone from JFS will contact them and connect them with resources. 
Available resources include:
  • Rental assistance or housing placement for those seeking short-term housing
  • Online support sessions for those coping with the stress of the storm and displacement, more information here
  • Food assistance
  • Access to childcare
  • Help transferring prescriptions or gaining medical assistance
  • Connections to High Holiday services
  • Elder care

Facilities at The J
The J is offering temporary use of its facilities to New Orleanians including the fitness center. It will also serve as a community gathering place with access to WIFI for those needing a place to meet, work, and/or take a break and purchase a kosher meal at Laykie’s Café at the J. Masks are required throughout the building.

For more information on J programs and available services, please contact Teri Greenblatt at tgreenblatt@erjcchouston.org.


High Holiday Services
With Rosh Hashanah beginning next Tuesday, September 7, and Yom Kippur on Wednesday, September 15, we know people may need a place to worship. A list of online services is available here. We are communicating with area rabbis and congregational leadership to ensure those who need a place to pray will have access.  We recommend filling out the intake form from JFS to be connected with specific help if in-person service attendance is requested. JFS will connect individuals with others who can help facilitate that request. 
Tulane Students
Houston Hillel is supporting students from Tulane who were evacuated to Houston this week. If you know of a Tulane student in need of connection, pastoral,  or crisis support, please have them email hillel@houstonhillel.org. This is an established email address that will be regularly monitored.
Ways You Can Help

Alright, Houston. We’ve done this before. Others have been there for us in our time of need. You know what to do. 

Monetary Donations
The Houston Federation is raising money to meet the urgent needs of those individuals who have evacuated to Houston, and the longer-term needs of those individuals and organizations in Louisiana as they begin to recover. A gift of any amount will do a great deal to help. Please donate to the Federation’s fund to help those impacted by Ida here. 
Housing Assistance
If you have a garage apartment or a room in your home that you can offer to an individual or family needing a place to stay, please click the link below to fill out the form and JFS will contact you if there is a match.
Louisiana, we’ve got your back. The Houston Jewish community is here and will remain here to support you through your recovery.

Visit our website for more information and a full list of resources. We will update our website as additional information become available.