Help Dry Flooded Louisiana Homes With Expert Bill Robinson

For: Train2Build and Bill Robinson
United States
Organizer: Kathy Price
Help Dry Flooded Louisiana Homes With Expert Bill Robinson (Train2Build and Bill Robinson)
of $2,600 goal
50% Complete
Raised by 16 donors

The Story

I asked my husband Bill Robinson how I could help the Louisiana flood victims. I thought maybe I could pitch in for a new washer and dryer for a family who lost theirs.

But it turns out these tens of thousands of flooded homes need to get dried out before anything can happen.

Bill said a high-powered industrial dehumidifier in conjunction with a high-powered industrial air mover does it best, and can take up to 120 pints of moisture a day from floors and walls.

We want to raise $2,600 to purchase at least 2 high-powered commercial dehumidifiers and 2 high-powered air movers that Bill can set up in 10 houses, let them do their magic, then move to the next houses. It's a small drop in the bucket compared to what needs to be done. But it's something.

And you can help! We need your donations large or small to buy these dehumidifiers and air movers.

These are the dehumidifiers:

These are the air movers:

The company has agreed to sell us the humidifiers for $1,100 including tax and shipping. But they expect to sell out soon. The work down here is a massive undertaking. The high-powered air movers are $200 each. When the drying and rebuilding is finished, the units will be donated to Habitat for Humanity and other rebuilding groups in the area.

About Bill Robinson:

If you know building and moisture expert Bill Robinson, you know that besides his long list of faults (ha ha), he is quite saintly in that he mostly wants to "hep out."

In fact, that's what landed us in New Orleans in the first place. We drove through in 2008, on our way back from the International Builders Show in Orlando, just to see how the city was doing 2 1/2 years after the failure of the federal levee system flooded much of the area. Bill had lived down here when he was a commercial diver for oil companies, and I had heard so much about the music and gumbo and lagniappe and étouffée and I had to discover the magic of this place. 

We were shocked to see how much was left to be done. While driving around, Bill, who at the time was a licensed California contractor, could see that many moisture-related and window-related details were not being done correctly, and that they would eventually fail. He began to refer to those as The Second Disaster.

Back home in California, living the good life, Bill could not in all good conscience abandon the folks in New Orleans. So he started flying down here on his own dime to see if he could be helpful in training the contractors rebuilding these homes. He got a $5,000 grant from a building materials company to help his cause.

Eventually, the folks at the LSU AgCenter noticed Bill (as he was everywhere) and they offered him a six-month contract to help educate contractors, homeowners, and rebuilding organizations. That's when I decided to pack up and move down here permanently. I had been enchanted by the soul of the city during our short stay. It has been one of the best decisions of my life.

In addition to being part-time staff at LSU AgCenter all these years, Bill has been very active in an organization called, which has helped hundreds of people in the Lower 9th Ward rebuild their flooded homes. He has trained thousands of people in home rebuilding, and has supervised countless volunteers who have come down here to "hep out." He also manages to operate a window restoration business.

It was Bill's concern for a woman in the Lower 9th Ward named Miss Sheila that started all of this. Watch the video that Festool made about Bill and you'll hear him mention Miss Sheila. Festool is not connected with this fundraising camping, but their video is so gorgeous that I wanted to use it.

I would really like to help Bill help the victims of the latest round of floods. All they want to do is get back into their homes. And those homes have to be dry to be safe.

Will you also "hep out" so these dehumidifiers and air movers can be purchased and set to work?

Please make any large or small donation, and we'll take it from here. Thank you tribe! We are all in this together.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on September 1, 2016

Posted on September 1, 2016

News Story: There Are Not Enough Humidifiers Available

The need for dehumidifiers for those affected by the Louisiana Flood of 2016 got a shout-out in a story today. The topic was a "shelter in place" plan that allows affected folks to live in their damaged homes as repairs are made. But if the homes are not dry, it's not happening. Here's what the article stated:

House must be dry before 'Shelter at Home' work can start, legislator says. 

Schroder said he is concerned there aren't enough dehumidifiers available for people to dry out their homes so repairs can begin. The contractors through the Shelter at Home program won't be able to make houses inhabitable again if the homes aren't dry. Otherwise, mold will be an issue, he said. 

Click here to read the whole article: Louisiana Flood recovery: 7 concerns about temporary housing

Our first commercial strength humidifier is working hard this very moment to dry out a Baton Rouge home. Please consider a donation so we can purchase a second unit.

Posted on August 27, 2016

Posted on August 27, 2016

OK! The commercial strength dehumidifier we all raised money to purchase is now at the Baton Rouge home of Debbie and her family. 

Their house took on 5 feet of water in the unnamed flood. That night, they had just attended their son's wedding reception and had out-of-town guests staying over. They got a call at 3 a.m. that the waters were rising. Debbie's husband swung his feet off the bed into a foot of water. 

They rushed for their vehicle and got out just in time. 

Thanks to volunteers, everything's been gutted. But the framing, exterior sheathing, and floor need to dry out before rebuilding begins. 

THANK YOU ALL for helping this happen. The machine is plugged in and doing its magic. We'll give updates on the dehumidifying process. We are looking to buy a second unit so each house can dry out twice as fast, each within a few days rather than a week.

Click here to see Debbie with the magic machine in Baton Rouge.

Posted on August 26, 2016

Posted on August 26, 2016

A musical tribute to the flood survivors. So touching!

Click here for a beautiful musical tribute.

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