As you might expect, the PSA has received a number of inquiries about ways in which our members might assist other PSA members or local councils hit hard by Hurricane Katrina. A number of our members have volunteered to help on site, to take in needy persons displaced by this terrible disaster, or assist in some other way. In an effort to help respond to these inquiries and offers, PSA President Ed Pease has been in touch with Roy Williams, the Chief Scout Executive, and has learned the following:
As of this date, the national council has accounted for 124 of the 126 BSA employees in councils directly hit by Hurricane Katrina. They immediately set up a fund with an initial National Council contribution of $200,000 to assist these employees. An appeal has been sent to all local councils to support the fund and contributions began arriving almost immediately. Currently, they are aware of nine employees who have lost everything and others in varying degrees of distress. Damage to a number of council camps ranges from minimal to severe. The same is true for council office buildings.
In order to better respond to the outpouring of offers for assistance, the national council has requested that all inquiries or offers to help be referred to the BSA website, where instructions are provided.
We know of about two dozen former Philstaffers living in the affected Gulf area, some of whom have been in touch with us. If you would like to try direct contact with former Philmont staff, please go to the PSA Members Only Area. You can access addresses there.
Thank you to the many Philstaffers who have offered to help.
Ed Pease, President
Philmont Staff Association