Cal-Nevada Youth Invited to Participate in Disaster-Recovery 'TARP' in Louisiana

January 22, 2009

On September 1, 2008, Hurricane Gustav ripped through South Louisiana, and Terrebonne Parish experienced the eye of the storm. As a strong Category 2 hurricane, Gustav's winds raged at 115 miles per hour, pushing a 12-foot storm surge into coastal Louisiana. Less than two weeks later, Hurricane Ike, the third most destructive hurricane in U.S. history, came ashore in Louisiana. Ike's 9-foot storm surge inundated hundreds of miles of coastline and thousands of homes in South Louisiana, re-flooding several homes that had already been damaged by Katrina, Rita, and Gustav. Together, these storms have devastated South Louisiana, leaving thousands in need of help.


In response to the devastating damage in South Louisiana caused by Hurricanes Gustav and Ike, First United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge, Louisiana has created Terrebonne Area Restoration Project (TARP). FUMCBR has participated in several mission projects over the last 25 years and is the creator of Project NOAH, a post-Katrina hurricane relief effort that has involved more than 2,000 people from across the country in rebuilding more than 30 homes in the New Orleans area. TARP is the newest youth mission opportunity being offered by FUMCBR.


TARP provides an opportunity for teens, ages 14 and older, to participate in the home repair and restoration of those affected by Hurricanes Gustav and Ike. Youth volunteers will work to repair roofs, floors, siding, and everything in between. Through their efforts, multiple homes in the Terrebonne area will be restored this summer.


TARP invites you to the home of Cajun culture and the heart of America's wetland, where homes and lives must now be rebuilt. Youth volunteers who commit one week of their summer to serve with TARP will have the opportunity to apply their faith in life-changing ways by sharing Christ's love through their words and actions. Volunteers will be immersed in a cross-cultural setting and encouraged to build new relationships across generations, among people from other racial groups, and with those from other denominations. They will truly experience the richness and diversity of God's kingdom.


After each day's work is done, volunteers will experience a true Louisiana-style celebration, followed by a time for reflection and worship. Designed with the hope of transforming hearts and minds, the TARP experience will not only change the lives of hurricane victims, but also the lives of those who serve.


TARP volunteers will be hosted in the Terrebonne area and will work at one of several work sites recommended by Louisiana Conference Disaster Response, Inc. TARP will run for seven weeks this summer, between June 14 and August 1, 2009.


TARP is now accepting applications from interested youth groups. For more information visit