Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast at the end of August in 2005. Carrollton helped found the Louisiana Family Recovery Corps (LFRC) in September of 2005 – not even 30 days after the storm while most of our staff was displaced from the storm.
The LFRC was a quasi-governmental organization set up to coordinate NGO disaster response utilizing micro-grants for “Last Mile” needs to get families from Fema trailer sites and other locations back into permanent residential situations.
Ultimately the LFRC served over 90,000 families and helped get tens of thousands back into their homes. The LFRC finished its mission and shut down approximately ten years after Katrina.
Carrollton pioneered many disaster recovery technologies during this response. Some of these innovations include creating the State’s official disaster recovery portal, Louisiana Rebuilds, now called GNOInfo. Carrollton also pioneered mobile and technology-enabled caseworkers for the LFRC as well as creating two technology products that are still considered ahead of their time.
One, called CORE (the Cross-Organizational Referral Engine) allowed different agencies to refer families to each other without forcing expensive systems integration work. The other, called W3 or “Who, What, Where” was the official and publicly accessible repository for services and conditions at Fema’s trailer sites throughout the disaster-affected area. This helped eliminate significant duplication of services by creating visibility into which agencies were working at which locations.
Both of these systems addressed problems that disaster relief organizations and agencies are still fighting today.