Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Stories from Hancock County, MS and Enterprise, AL

Everyone has a story to tell, especially those who have experienced tragedies. Their stories tell the trauma, frustrations, emotions, and changes to their lives. By telling their stories, survivors make a record of their experiences and help us to understand and to empathize with their situation. We will never be able to experience the tragedy as they did, but we can give the victims our thoughts and prayers and possible assist them.

This post is about stories of tragedies that happen a six weeks ago and 19 months ago. These two stories were written for two different purposes after two different storms. Commonality in these stories are adapting, perseverance, generosity, hope, and faith.

The Katrina Recovery Trip 2006
The Katrina Recovery Trip 2006 document was written in an effort to call for assistance for the citizens of Hancock County. In addition to describing the needs for assistance, Gwen Smith, Hancock County Extension Director, describes how she adjusted Extension programming to meet the needs of citizens of Hancock County, after Katrina. The devastation in Hancock County is still overwhelming, even more than one year after Katrina. The Katrina Recovery Trip 2006 document is a call for help.

Enterprise High School Teacher's Email
Amy Covington, an Enterprise High School teacher, wrote an email one month after a tornado ravished the city of Enterprise killing 9 people (eight Enterprise high school students). Amy's experience, like others from Enterprise, has changed her outlook--changed her forever. She is dealing with the loss of the stability of her life. Amy and others in the Enterprise school system have adjusted to shared building space with a local community college.

George Bush in his visit to Enterprise on Saturday, March 3, said “Out of this rubble will emerge a better tomorrow,” and referring to the student government president, “she will have the opportunity to help rebuild” and learn that hope can follow tragedy.

Through the generosity and kindness of others, survivors of tragedies are able to see that there is hope and that there is goodness in this world. The kindness that comes out of bad situations is what breeds hope for those whose lives have been devastated.

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