BIOGRAPHY:NAME: Carrie BarchickBIRTHDAY: 7/23/1986YEAR: SophomoreMAJOR: Psychology and SociologyHOMETOWN:Virginia Beach, VAASTROLOGICAL SIGN (FUN FACT): LeoFAVORITE MEMORY: Meeting the homeowners and hearing the different stories
There are times in life when people look back on what they have done and smile. This is definitely one of those times and I will not only look back and smile, but I will look back and shed a tear. I didn't have too many expectations prior to going down to New Orleans. I've seen pictures and I've heard stories, but youreally have to see it to believe it!The streets were filled with abandoned cars and debris when we first arrived in New Orleans. The smell was absolutely foul when we got off the bus. It looked like it just happened yesterday. People around the world have no idea how bad of a beaten New Orleans took from Hurricane Katrina and if they did it would still be all over the news. Every house we rode by had spray paint on it, some with good news and some with bad. There were holes in many roofs where people tried to escape through the attics. At night, it’s a ghost town and all the streets are dark. Some of the residents haven’t even come back yet and some haven’t even been found. The city has hope with signs on high buildings saying, “Welcome Back New Orleans” and “Welcome Home New Orleans...Let the Good Times Roll...AGAIN!” With a lot of work and high spirits New Orleans will be back, but it will take years and years to do it.
This trip completely changed my life. I know a lot of us will say those exact words and personally I feel that with the experience we went through it should have changed all of us in some way. We worked on 18 houses, completing 15 of them, we saved the city over $42,500, we saved the homeowners between $10,000-$15,000 each, and we became apart of their families. What more could we ask for? All of the homeowners I talked to must have said “thanks” about one hundred times to us each day. They knew why we were down there and that all we wanted to do was help. The homeowners put their faith in us and worked with us to help bring back their homes. The whole demolition process had its ups and downs. While clearing out the houses, almost everything was destroyed, but it was a relief to find things that the owners could save. As we tore out the carpets, drywalls, ceilings, and insulation it was heartbreaking, but when the house was complete the homeowners told us how they were going to rebuild it and what colors they were going to use in each room. I loved hearing the homeowners talk about the new plans for their homes, seeing the finishing product, and not only hearing thank you but also saying thank you for what they have taught me. They taught me never to give up when you have lost everything and they reminded me that no matter what happens to you in life, as long as you trust in God, you will flourish. People in New Orleans have hope that one day their city will be back to normal and I pray every night, for the sake of those families, that it will!
I want to thank everyone from back at home who helped me out with this trip!I couldn't have done it without you!(Family, Friends, Members of Siebert Realty and Dave French)