With the 15th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina here, we’re called to reflect on the many ways that those years have changed New Orleans. It’s impossible to know how many thousands of people from around the world volunteered to rebuild alongside those of us that call New Orleans home, but those efforts played a central role in the city’s reconstruction and will forever be woven into the fabric of our community.
As a company, we’re most proud of the ways we develop neighborhoods and engage our communities. Our work following Hurricane Katrina has shaped Domain as a company and the spirit of volunteerism is ingrained in our core values. Though the water and debris are long gone, there are many ways that the city still grapples with the aftermath. Domain continues to leverage our volunteer muscle to remedy those damages even today.
K10 Day of Service
In 2015, Domain took part in the K10 Day of Service on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Team members, residents, and friends participated in a unique service project to revitalize the Wise Words Community Garden, planting, building garden boxes, seeding, painting, removing debris, and cutting down trees. The citywide Day of Service celebrated the spirit of volunteerism that has existed throughout the Greater New Orleans area post-Hurricane Katrina. This event engaged thousands of volunteers across seven regions of the city with over 100 projects.
Comiskey Playground Revitalization
The following year we turned our attention to Comiskey Playground, a neighborhood park operated by the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission. This playground, home to an array of after-school programs including football, basketball, and cheerleading, had fallen into disrepair post-Katrina. New lighting and signage were installed, the basketball court was taped and re-striped, and the recreation center’s exterior and interior were painted, including bathrooms, kitchen, supply closets, and team rooms – all in Comiskey’ blue and yellow team colors.
Planting Trees with SOUL
In 2019, we teamed up with Sustaining Our Urban Landscape (SOUL) to plant 122 water-loving trees in neighborhoods prone to flooding and heavily impacted by Hurricane Katrina. Eight groups planted trees at 50 cluster sites throughout New Orleans. Cypress, oak, magnolia, and holly trees were planted that each absorb up to 1,000 gallons of rainwater each day. These trees will provide shade that lowers energy bills, minimizes flooding, and beautifies neighborhoods.
These three project are just a snapshot of our social impact work and commitment. Today, the sense of hope and optimism in New Orleans is stronger than ever, and we’re proud to play a role in that redevelopment.