August 29 2006
E*TRADE FINANCIAL Supports Project Restore HOPE Initiative for Mississippi Community
Contribution continues to assist hurricane victims one year after Katrina
LOS ANGELES August 29, 2006 - E*TRADE FINANCIAL and Operation HOPE’s Project Restore HOPE Initiative, a division of HOPE Coalition America (HCA), have issued an additional $60,000 grant award in recognition of the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) founding member Dr. Dorothy Height to assist homeowners in the Forest Heights, Mississippi Community in their rebuilding efforts, one year after Hurricane Katrina.
“As many reflect on the one year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, repair and reconstruction continues to be a leading issue for homeowners in Forest Heights, MS. E*TRADE FINANCIAL continues to be a major corporate financial partner stepping up once again to provide financial resources to Project Restore HOPE Initiative.” HCA Managing Director Fred Smith states, “This additional funding from E*TRADE FINANCIAL will allow 20 additional families to make needed repairs to their homes. Operation HOPE will continue to process applications for HOPE Funds until our sources of funds are exhausted.”
In the devastating aftermath of Katrina, E*TRADE FINANCIAL committed to a $500,000 cash grant to Project Restore HOPE to bridge the gap for those whose homes were damaged due to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. E*TRADE’s commitment has assisted 113 families to rebuild. The additional funds will allow 20 more families to receive money for repairs to rebuild their homes. To date, Operation HOPE has distributed close to $400,000 in HOPE grants to families in need.
“With this funding, originally provided to Operation HOPE through the generosity of E*TRADE, 20 additional Katrina families will have the opportunity to bridge the gap of uninsured rebuilding cost. It will go a long way for families in the Forest Heights area whose homes were lost or damaged by Katrina,” remarked Dr. Dorothy Height, NCNW president emeritus and Forest Heights’ namesake.
The availability of the HOPE grant has been helpful to Hurricane Katrina victims like Janika Carter, a mother of four who is using the funds to pay the first month\'s rent and security deposit to set up a new home for her family. Preston Hollings, a homeowner and home based business entrepreneur suffered damage to his roof that made his house uninhabitable. Hollings will use the money to repair the roof and restore his home and business. Matthew Santolucito found a landlord who was willing to partially defer his move-in costs. Santolucito was facing eviction if the remaining move-in costs were not paid. The grant provided him with the money necessary to avoid eviction and continue living at his current residence.
“Many families suffered the effects of the devastating hurricanes of 2005 and continue to seek resources that can help them rebuild,” said Arlen Gelbard, Chief Administrative Officer, E*TRADE FINANCIAL. “E*TRADE FINANCIAL continues to commit employee volunteers and funds to help those affected by Katrina reconstruct their finances and homes to move forward with their lives.”
HOPE Coalition America was formed, in response to the 9/11 tragedy, soon partnering with Department of Homeland Security/FEMA and Citizen Corps, a division of the nationwide grass-roots initiative, to actively involve Americans in creating safer, stronger and better prepared communities. Project Restore HOPE – Hurricane Katrina was created to administer ‘economic triage,’ financial counseling and emergency budgeting, to the victims of Hurricane Katrina by recruiting and deploying volunteers to work in financial reconstruction response and recovery teams for on-the-ground efforts in Louisiana, Mississippi and in call centers located in Poway, CA and Dallas, TX.
E*TRADE FINANCIAL has been an Operation HOPE signature partner since 2002 and is recognized for providing nearly $8 million in support of HOPE’s many programs, including “Banking on Our Future” (BOOF) financial literacy program for youth program, the Anacostia-Washington, D.C. and Harlem-New York City HOPE Centers, Project Restore HOPE and support services like office facilities and technical support. Additionally, E*TRADE FINANCIAL provides volunteers to HOPE Corps, HOPE’s volunteer task force.
Operation HOPE founder John Bryant encouraged competitive giving by challenging other partners and outside organizations to join in HOPE’s relief efforts to provide “economic triage.” “A year after the storm, the country continues the debate about Katrina. Our job is to get results and form partnerships that allow us to continue with the needed work in getting the lives normalized for hundreds of families. We as financial pioneers have an opportunity to make an impressionable difference. Let’s continue to help redirect the lives of the hurricane victims to an improved normalcy, as we integrate our financial literacy initiatives with our efforts in response to these devastating storms.”