RESERVE, La. — An event to provide meals and other essentials to residents of St. John the Baptist Parish following Hurricane Ida is happening today.
Ahead of the return of the 2022 NCAA Men's Final Four to New Orleans, the organization has teamed up with the New Orleans Local Organizing Committee, consisting of Tulane University, the University of New Orleans, the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation, and the New Orleans School of Cooking to assist with ongoing relief efforts and provide hot meals to residents recovering from Hurricane Ida.
The day of service will start at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday at Regala Park in Reserve, Louisiana.
"This event couldn't come at a better time - to really show the need for these people here," President & CEO of Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation Jay Cicero says.
The NCAA Men's Final Four returns to New Orleans next year for the sixth time. The event will mark a significant milestone as it will be one of the largest major sporting events to take place in the city and the state since the Covid-19 pandemic. Cicero says this is a way to connect a major event to people who are in dire need.
"Hosting this event in six months really gives us the opportunity to tell a story to the rest of the country and the rest of the world of where Louisiana is in our recovery. To tell a story of how resilient our people are and where the need is still," Cicero says.
Through this event, they are hoping to provide relief to up to 700 people in the area.
"There's going to be a number of materials available from gloves to water, and then food will be donated from New Orleans School of Cooking," Cicero said. "They've generously donated their time and food, and we think we're going to be able to serve between 500 and 700 people."
Local and state officials including Parish President Jaclyn Hotard, State Representative Randal Gaines, and State Senator Ed Price will be touring the area starting at 7 a.m., before making their way to the hurricane relief event located at 200 Regala Park Road, Reserve, Louisiana 70068.