Date of Award
Planning and Urban Studies
AmeriCorps, the federal volunteer program developed in 1993, has won increasing political and cultural support since its development. Hurricane Katrina challenged program administrators to recruit and support volunteers in New Orleans, a uniquely devastated city. This qualitative study based on interviews with former volunteers examines the implications of AmeriCorps program policies for the recovery of postKatrina New Orleans. Rooted in statements by the United Nations, the Federal Emergency Response Agency and local grassroots organizations, this study concludes that the AmeriCorps program was not effective in facilitating the return of displaced residents, appropriately utilizing city resources or maintaining strong accountability to those most affected by the disaster. Thus, the AmeriCorps program, which is not intended specifically for disaster relief, must be redesigned in order to accountably contribute to recovery in the cases of acute disaster.
Danielson, Emily, "Volunteerism in Crisis: AmeriCorps as Disaster Response" (2010). University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations. 1232.