NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Although saltwater may not creep into Orleans Parish until late November, nonprofits Rebuilding Together New Orleans and Feed the Second Line are preparing now to ensure vulnerable communities have access to safe drinking water.

With the help of the Home Depot Foundation, RTNO is putting $50,000 toward reverse osmosis units to help low-income communities and those experiencing homelessness.

“We have already purchased 15 commercial systems that we plan to deploy at community centers, like low-barrier shelters or other places that have a lot of large populations that use a lot of water,” explained Executive Director at Rebuilding Together New Orleans William Stoudt.

The units they have purchased so far will produce about 100 thousand gallons of water per day, but Stoudt says that’s not going to cut it.

“We’re gathering resources,” Stoudt said. “Obviously, this is going to take a village of people and an army to respond to this disaster, but fortunately we have time.”

RTNO will be partnering with the nonprofit Feed the Second Line, which will ensure the city’s younger culture bearers have access to individual reverse osmosis systems and job opportunities.

“[We’re going] to also train them to actually put those water filters on the homes of the elder culture bearers in our communities,” said Feed the Second Line Executive Director Tinice Williams.

Williams says the sky’s the limit when it comes to their mitigation efforts.

“We want to do as many [as we can] because at this time, not only is it going to help right now, but this is something that can be useful in their homes long term as well,” Williams said.

Those you would like to help these nonprofits in their efforts by making a donation can visit the RTNO website or at the Feeding the Second Line website.

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