The Greater New Orleans Foundation

The Greater New Orleans Foundation

I can remember watching my television in horror on April 20, 2010, a little over a year ago, when an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico began pumping thousands and thousands of gallons of oil into the ocean. My family and I love going to Orange Beach, which is on the Gulf, at Thanksgiving. I can’t ever remember not going. But the year the oil spill happened, we didn’t go. I was sad, but also a little relieved that I didn’t have to go see the beach in a different state than I had always remembered. It’s probably selfish of me, considering the vast numbers of people more affected by the spill, and the wildlife that was displaced from their natural habitats. But the oil spill didn’t only influence the people directly involved, it also changed the aesthetics of the beaches that surround the Gulf.

You might be surprised to learn that relief efforts are still continuing all over the southeast to help victims of the spill, both humans and animals. I was researching various non-profits that had done a lot of work during the months that followed the oil spill, and found massive lists of organizations. So many people have done so much, from picking up oil on the sand to cleaning oil off animals.

The Greater New Orleans Foundation (GNOF) stood out in my mind. They serve 13 parishes of New Orleans which were affected directly by the oil spill through inventing ways to improve the communities, finding donors to meet community needs, finding and funding non-profits, and strengthening the feeling of comradeship in the parishes. GNOF created the Gulf Coast Oil Spill Fund, so that people from all over the country can donate to the cause, and GNOF turns around and gives the money to various non-profit organizations who work directly in the 13 devastated parishes. They work on research as well: “We also work to address the long-term economic, environmental, and cultural effects of the disaster, while simultaneously focusing on strengthening coastal communities against future environmental catastrophes.”

The Greater New Orleans Foundation currently allocates most of their funds to approximately 15 non-profit organizations, including the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, Market Umbrella, Louisiana Justice Institute, and the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation. These organizations do a variety of things for the New Orleans area, including improving water quality, providing legal assistance to affected fishermen and their families, and coordinating marine research and innovation among many other things.

Everything GNOF has done would not have been possible without donations from the public. If you were affected by the Oil Spill, GNOF would be one of the first umbrella organizations you should contact.

Interested in continuing the relief efforts for the oil spill? The Greater New Orleans Foundation has a way you can donate – either go online to the website at the bottom of the article or send your check to the following address.

Greater New Orleans Foundation
1055 St. Charles Ave, Ste 100
New Orleans, LA 70130

Please make your check payable to GNOF and write “Gulf Coast Oil Spill Fund” on the memo line.


Jenny Combs

Team 2: Servant Scholars

Grade 11

Alabaster, AL

About the author

Jenny Combs Jenny Combs, 16, Evangel Classical Christian School, Alabaster, AL - East Villagers has given me the opportunity to see that community service and volunteerism isn’t just about others – it has shown me more about myself than I ever would have imagined. The Service Scholar Intern position would allow me to partner with others on a worldwide scale, in addition to opening my eyes to humanitarian issues. I think that the internship will provide me with a great opportunity to expound upon my writing skills and ability to succeed under deadlines.

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