DOI / VISTA Team Projects
Groundwork New Orleans
DOI / VISTA: Aurielle Modster
Supervisor: Alicia Neal
Address: 536 Washington Ave., New Orleans, Louisiana 70130
County: Orleans Parish County
Voice Telephone: 504-208-2771
Web site: www.groundworknola.org/
Web site 2: www.facebook.com/GroundworkNewOrleans
Congressional District: 2
Bureau: National Park Service (NPS)
Groundwork New Orleans (GWNO), established in 2006 through a significant partnership between the National park Service and the City of New Orleans, is a trust of Groundwork USA. Groundwork New Orleans works to bring about the sustained regeneration, improvement, and management of the physical environment by developing community-based partnerships that empower people, businesses, and organizations to promote environmental, economic, and social well-being. GWNO continues to be an active partner of the NPS Groundwork Program. The National Park Service preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the national park system for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.
The DOI/VISTA project site Groundwork New Orleans is sponsored by the National Park Service (NPS) whose mission is to preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the national park system for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.
About the Surrounding Community
Around 24% of New Orleans residents live below the poverty level and have a median household income of $35,243. A large percentage of New Orleans residents are considered minorities, of which 60% are African American. Approximately 5% are of Hispanic or Latino origin. 98% of students take part in the free or reduced lunch program, an indicator of low income. The Lower Ninth Ward neighborhood was one of the hardest hit regions during Katrina due to the breach of the Industrial Canal levee wall. After Katrina and Rita, residents of the Lower Ninth Ward have struggled to return to their neighborhood against enormous political and economic impediments. GWNO has identified several persistent obstacles still faced by residents of the Lower Ninth Ward including: lack of access to fresh food; lack of representation in conversations concerning revitalization of New Orleans; danger of contaminants and toxins leaching into soil and water as a result of illegal dumping and littering; lack of investment on the part of businesses; safety hazards found in overgrown and abandoned lots; and lack of population density. GWNO seeks to work with neighborhood residents and stakeholders both in the Lower Ninth Ward and throughout the city to improve the resiliency of the underserved community and, by extension, the entire coastal and urban region.
The DOI/VISTA, Lily Bartlett, works directly with Groundwork New Orleans's youth job training program providing the much needed programmatic support and development. Lily assists the Green Team students by helping them improve at-risk ecosystems and increase green job opportunities. The Green Team program is a job training program for students ages 14 to 18. The students are involved in every aspect of the organizations’ projects. We currently have Green Team programs at Martin Luther King School and Net Charter.
Sponsors and Partners
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