NEW ORLEANS, La. – Wood saws buzzed, paint brushes dipped and hammers pounded against the side of an Army veteran’s home in the Hollygrove neighborhood on Thursday, March 7, as a crew of volunteers from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, Healthy Blue Louisiana and New Orleans Pelicans made needed repairs and upgrades.
The community project was organized through Rebuilding Together New Orleans, a national nonprofit community revitalization organization. Both Blue Cross and Healthy Blue have made corporate donations to Rebuilding Together New Orleans within the past year.
The homeowner is a double amputee, and his family needed assistance to repair siding, paint the outside of the home and build a wheelchair ramp for easier access to the back entrance.
“Many of our homeowners, especially seniors, are living in unsafe conditions, so it’s really important that our organization partner with volunteers like Blue Cross, Healthy Blue and the Pelicans to have the manpower to make as many repairs as possible,” said William Stoudt, director of Rebuilding Together New Orleans. “Together, we are helping make homes safer in the community.”
“We’re making sure this home is safe and strong for the homeowner, who has served our country and given so much to this community,” said Michael Tipton, head of Community Relations for Blue Cross and Foundation president. “This is an opportunity for Team Blue and our partners here in New Orleans to give back in service and make a difference.”
“It’s an honor to join Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and the Pelicans to make important house repairs and to show our support for veterans,” said Aaron Lambert, president, Healthy Blue. “The event showed first-hand the impact we can have when organizations work together toward a common goal.”
The volunteers had a special visit from Pelicans player Darius Miller and team mascot, Pierre The Pelican, who came to the build site to meet the homeowners and cheer on the work crew. “The city is the people who support us, and whenever we get a chance to come back and show support for them, we try to do so,” Miller said.
Despite gray skies all day, the rain held off, and volunteers made a lot of progress in building the ramp and removing rotted boards from the house’s siding. Volunteers also began repainting the house, transforming it from white to sunny yellow. The repairs will be completed by rotating volunteer crews in the coming weeks.
The volunteer project will be featured in a two-minute video segment at the April 3 Pelicans game. Photos from the event are included with this press release.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is committed to our mission to improve the health and lives of Louisianians. We invest both time and money in the communities we serve, supporting the health and wellbeing of Louisianians through more than 200 charitable organizations.
With our subsidiaries, HMO Louisiana and Southern National Life, we provide group and individual health insurance plans, life and disability insurance, group voluntary products and administrative services to one out of four Louisiana residents. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana also provides Medicare supplement and Medicare Advantage plans and is a partner in offering the Healthy Blue Medicaid Managed care plan. Louisiana is the only state where we operate, with offices in every major region to serve our customers.
Founded in New Orleans in 1934, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is a tax-paying non-profit health insurer. We are a private mutual company, owned by our policyholders, with an independent Louisiana Board of Directors and no shareholders. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
To learn more, visit our website at www.bcbsla.com.
About Healthy Blue
Healthy Blue, formerly known as Amerigroup Louisiana, is a managed healthcare provider that has been serving the state since 2012, and currently serves the state’s Medicaid, Medicaid Expansion and LaCHIP programs. Healthy Blue recognizes the challenges low-income and underserved individuals face, and tailors its programs such that health plan members are assured care that is not only accessible, but also accountable, comprehensive, integrated and patient-centered. Healthy Blue provides ongoing community relations and outreach to encourage members to become active participants in their healthcare. Also, through health education programs, members are empowered to choose and sustain healthy lifestyles. To learn more about Healthy Blue, visit www.myhealthybluela.com.
About Rebuilding Together New Orleans
Rebuilding Together New Orleans (RTNO), a local affiliate of Rebuilding Together, Inc. has restored and revitalized more than 1,600 homes over the past 30 years in the New Orleans area. Utilizing volunteer labor, Rebuilding Together New Orleans allows low-income families in communities across the city to live in comfort, safety, and dignity. Rebuilding Together New Orleans is a program of the Preservation Resource Center, an organization devoted to promoting the preservation, restoration, and revitalization of New Orleans’ historic architecture and neighborhoods.
To learn more, visit our website at www.rtno.org.