US Gulf Coast Recovery Program Fact Sheet
An overview of Oxfam America's continuing effort to rebuild the Gulf Coast
Published: Aug 22, 2008
Even before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the Gulf Coast, Louisiana and Mississippi were the two poorest states in the nation. Nearly one in five residents lived below the national poverty line of about $20,000 in annual income for a family of four. Good schools, job opportunities, and decent housing were scarce. Now the region is in crisis. The 2005 storms, coupled with levee failures, severely damaged or destroyed more than 300,000 homes across the Gulf Coast. Seventy-one percent of the housing Katrina damaged or ruined was affordable to low-income households. Today communities are struggling to rebuild schools, health facilities, and businesses—all while residents remain displaced or still live in trailers.