Louisiana Hospitality Foundation Continues Flood Relief Efforts

September 13, 2016

NEW ORLEANS, La. (September 13, 2016) – The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation continues to focus its fundraising efforts on flood relief. Through combined efforts, including an industry-wide awareness campaign, the annual Louisiana Seafood Festival fundraiser, and an upcoming fundraising and community service event planned for Denham Springs, the foundation is working toward building up funds that will be distributed via crisis grants to members of the hospitality industry that have been impacted by flooding. Although we know over 55,000 Louisiana homes were flooded and hospitality is one of the biggest employment sectors in the state, we are still unsure of the number of hospitality workers impacted.

Industry-Wide Awareness Campaign
In late August, a fundraising awareness campaign was initiated in conjunction with Visit Baton Rouge, the capitol city’s official travel and tourism organization. Press releases, emails and personal phone calls were made to tourism and hospitality organizations and associations across the country. Many were reaching out and looking for a way to help when they heard about the flooding, and have been directed to donate to the foundation to help industry workers. Donations are still being accepted: https://www.louisianahospitalityfoundation.org/donate.

Louisiana Seafood Festival
The Louisiana Seafood Festival, which was held September 2-4, 2016 in New Orleans, is one of the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation’s biggest annual fundraising events and this year’s proceeds were dedicated to flood relief. The festival introduced an admission fee for guests to help grow fundraising efforts, but also dealt with weather issues including two lightning closures throughout the weekend. The overall attendance and event revenue was down from prior years. However, the festival was a high-quality, safe event for all guests and was able to achieve a profit after expenses, which will be utilized for crisis grants.

“Doin’ It For Denham presented by Conhagen & UnitedHealthcare”
This Sunday, September 18, 2016, the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation is participating in “Doin’ It For Denham presented by Conhagen & UnitedHealthcare,” an event to create additional awareness of the continued need for help in flooded areas and to provide support for the people of Denham Springs, LA and the surrounding area. The NOLA Tree Project, led by Connie Uddo, will direct a team of volunteers to assist flood victims with cleanup and recovery efforts in the morning. At noon, volunteers and members of the community are invited to enjoy food and beverages courtesy of New Orleans and Baton Rouge area restaurants at Juban Crossing, 27853 Juban Rd. in Denham Springs.

Participating restaurants and food sponsors include Acme Oyster House, Arnaud’s Restaurant, Beausoleil, Besh Restaurant Group, Coffee Rani, Deuce McAlister’s Ole Saint, Doran Seafood, Drago’s Seafood Restaurant, Juban’s, Katie’s Restaurant, Luke, PJ’s Coffee & Tea, Raising Cane’s, Ruffino’s, T.A. Dowd Brokerage, TJ Ribs, Trey Yuen, WOW Café American Grill & Wingery, Zatarain’s, and Zea Rotisserie & Bar.

Event sponsors include the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation, Louisiana Restaurant Association, The Taste Buds, Conhagen, UnitedHealthcare, Second Harvest Food Bank, State Machinery, Pelican Events, The Sound Source, Champagne Beverage, Coca-Cola United, Dr. Charles W. Boustany Jr., Republic National Distributing Corporation, D.A. Exterminating, Sterno, Delaware North and Custom Apparel.

To volunteer with house gutting and clean up starting at 8:00 a.m., sign up at www.nolatreeproject.org. To sponsor the event or make a donation, contact Jennifer Kelley with the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation at jen@louisianahospitality.org or (504) 913-5980 or visit https://www.louisianahospitalityfoundation.org/doin-it-for-denham.

Crisis Fund Application
The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation provides financial assistance and guidance to members of the hospitality industry during times of crisis, which is a core part of its mission. Qualified applicants must be an employee of the hospitality industry, and working and living full-time in Louisiana. Crisis grant funding may include temporary mortgage or rent assistance, payment of medical-related bills, and/or payment of utility bills. Members of the hospitality industry that have been impacted by recent flooding can apply online for grant assistance at https://www.louisianahospitalityfoundation.org/crisis-grants.

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