The second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina has arrived, and the situation in New Orleans is still dire, as federal aid stays stagnant.
As is often true, however, ordinary people are taking extraordinary measures to act where leaders fail.
In Ithaca this past weekend, the Rotary club held one in a series of rummage sales to raise funds to bring supplies and workers from Ithaca to the Mississippi coast.
The group Love Knows No Bounds conducts similar relief efforts for New Orleans, particularly the city's Seventh Ward. The group is working with the city of Ithaca to create a "sister city" relationship with the ward to formalize and co-ordinate relief work.
Ithaca Hours, the local currency system, is negotiating a place in the proposed relationship, with the goal of bringing a local currency system to New Orleans, to replace absent dollars in New Orleans, and resusicate their local economy.
A local currency can be a particularly potent tool in a situation where there are great needs, and people and resources to meet needs for labor and trade, but no dollars to connect them. A local currency system in New Orleans would be a systematic way to create and perpetuate economic vitality.
A proposal for a New Orleans currency will be reaching Mayor Ray Nagin soon - perhaps sometime this week. Ithaca Blog will have first news of all developments.
Meanwhile - find out more about Love Knows No Bounds at http://www.loveknowsnobounds.org,/ and Ithaca Hours at http://www.ithacahours.org/.
for Ithaca Blog