In A Flash

Louisiana foster kids relocated to Nebraska for weeks after Hurricane Ida

By: - October 4, 2021 6:30 am

A woman looks over damage to a neighborhood caused by Hurricane Ida on Aug. 30, 2021 in Kenner, Louisiana. Ida made landfall Sunday as a category 4 storm southwest of New Orleans. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Teenagers from group homes in New Orleans and Gretna returned to Louisiana Sept. 28, after weeks spent in Nebraska following Hurricane Ida. 

Before Ida hit, the teenagers, who ranged in age from 13-18, were evacuated from the New Orleans Boys Town group homes to Lake Claiborne State Park in Homer, Louisiana, staying there from Aug. 28 to Sept. 3. 

It was unclear how many teens were evacuated. The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services said 12 teens under their jurisdiction were moved, and an article from Nebraska on the move put the total number at 24.

“We were glad to be able to assist those in need during this difficult time for our state. Our state parks provide a peaceful alternative for evacuees and we stand ready to help citizens of Louisiana during times of emergency,” Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser said in a statement. 

From the state park, the teens were moved to Boys Town Nebraska, another branch of the organization. 

 The move was approved by the Department of Children and Family Services, which oversees the homes. According to department spokesperson Catherine Heitman, caseworkers informed the families of evacuated teens and staff members from the homes accompanied the teens for the duration of the evacuation. 

“A similar arrangement was made after Hurricane Katrina, and we were in regular contact with them throughout the process,” Heitman said. 

Representatives from Boys Town Louisiana could not be reached for comment.

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Rachel Mipro
Rachel Mipro

Rachel Mipro has previous experience at WBRZ and The Reveille and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Louisiana State University. At LSU, she worked as an opinion editor for The Reveille and as a nonfiction editor for the university’s creative writing journal. In her free time, she enjoys baking, Netflix and hiking.