Not Backing Down: Reconcile Goes Digital with Video Updates

Alumni Like Fred Smooth Need Your Help

Thanks to your support, our young people are receiving the help they need.

It has been a busy two weeks at Reconcile, but thanks to your support of the Now More Than Ever campaign, our young people are receiving the help they need (see infographic).

“Now more than ever, we need each other. We need to come together, stay safe, stay positive, and just believe.”

2017 Reconcile Alumnus Fred Smooth

This is a powerful reminder from a young man YOU helped.

Fred Smooth graduated in 2017 from Reconcile New Orleans (RNO). He was working at a local juice bar preparing salads, struggling to find his next move, when he applied to RNO. “Reconcile was life-changing! I was drawn to it because of my sister, who also graduated from Reconcile. At Reconcile I learned so much, not just from the working standpoint, but everyday life lessons. I say the standards that they follow—being on time and being prepared—they prepare you for everyday life. From the people I met there—from Mr. O and Ms. G to Gerald, Chef Joe, and Chef Eugene—picking their brains every day I was there, it was just awesome. I still visit from time to time just to see those people, because they have a major impact on my life.”

2017 Reconcile alumnus Fred Smooth with his daughter Xylo

Since 2017, Fred and his sister have successfully supported themselves working their way up the ladder at The Roosevelt Hotel. He’s earned awards, developed strong professional relationships – he had a future and a path forward in life; five to 10 years from now, he has the goal of being a manager or co-owner of a restaurant.

All of that has come to a halt. Today he is unemployed, trying to support himself and his family. The father of a 1-year-old girl, Fred received one of the $75 gift cards Reconcile distributed last week. He used the funds for immediate needs such as food, diapers, and other necessities for his baby girl.

Today, Alumni like Fred need your help.

You can ensure our young people have the resources and help they need to make it through this difficult time. Reconcile’s Now More Than Ever Campaign is providing direct assistance to our Alumni through gift cards, mental health services, and remote case management that ensures they’re getting access to all the community resources available to them. 

Our young people need us now, and they are looking to you for help. As Fred said, “Now more than ever, we need each other. We need to come together, stay safe, stay positive, and just believe. Let’s focus on the solution and not the problem. We are bigger than this Coronavirus.”

We are, indeed, bigger than Coronavirus. Together, we are Reconcile. Will you help?

Reconcile Launches “Now, More Than Ever” Campaign

Now more than ever, Reconcile Alumni need your help.

For the first time in our 20-year history, we are facing an unprecedented hurdle – our Café is closed, our program work is being offered remotely, and the industry where our young people were employed has been completely shuttered. 

These young people need your help to continue to build a path to self-sufficiency, support their family, and chase their dreams, and they need it now.

This week, many of our young people will receive their last paycheck for quite some time. In just one week our Program Hotline has made 340 touches with our young people searching for help to navigate these unprecedented times.

Each day, they live paycheck to paycheck, support family members, and try their best to build their futures.

Today, they are talking about being scared, isolated, and confused while trying to navigate the myriad of complicated resources that are available.

These are scary times, but as long as our young people need us, Reconcile will be there for them.

You – our Reconcile family – can make sure we care for these young people when they need us most.

Reconcile’s Client Assistance Fund provides essential resources to help our young people bridge life’s gaps in difficult times like these. A gift from you today will support Reconcile’s program team to do the work that ensures our young people’s well-being.  What will your gift provide?

·       Wellness and crisis check-in sessions with our full-time Mental Health Manager

·       Connections to crisis counselors

·       Help navigating and filing unemployment forms with our Youth Advocates

·       Individual financial assistance when other community resources are not available

Most importantly, Reconcile’s Client Assistance Fund ensures that our young people always know someone is there for them.

We can’t do it without you. Your help is critical to their stability and well-being. Can we count on you? DONATE NOW.

COVID-19 Helpful Resources

ResourceLink / Contact InfoNotes
COVID-19 Child Nutrition Programs available for Families
SNAP (Food Stamps)1-888-524-3578. Dial 1-3-1-3-6 for shortcut to be on holdIf you’re in the New Orleans / Northshore / Bayou / Lake Charles regions, dial 211 for assistance. In Acadiana, dial 337-232-HELP. For anything not covered here, please email
Benefits Enrollment: Catholic Charities605-9248, msmith@ccano.orgMary Smith, 605-9248, – Benefits Enrollment (from Maria Huete)
Second Harvest Food Bank, 8am-7pm, can call at 1-855-392-9338. Provides application assistance and case management over the phone and in person as well as help with Food pantry referrals and:
• SNAP (Food Stamps)
• FITAP – Family Independence Temporary Assistance (Formerly TANF)
• KCSP – Kinship Care Subsidy Program
• Child Support
• Access to community support counselors
NOLA Tree Project Food Distribution (from Second Harvest)connie@nolatreeproject.orgWill deliver meals to elderly or homebound: email
TCA FoodTCA Food Pantry, located at 4518 Thalia StreetWill offer supplemental food assistance to families daily between the hours of 8-5, beginning Tuesday, March 17. During the emergency declaration, all families are eligible and encouraged to participate in the supplemental food distribution.
Legal Assistance: Housing and Evictions Evictions Suspended. First and Second City Court have suspended all residential evictions until April 24, 2020, with further orders to follow.
Financial and Legal Assistance to prevent homelessness (rental assistance and foreclosure mitigation)The Mayor’s Office of Community Development has partnered with Southeast Louisiana Legal Services, Total Community Action and New Orleans Family Justice Alliance to provide immediate financial and legal assistance for homelessness prevention which includes rental assistance and foreclosure mitigation. Inquiries should be made to the Office of Community Development at (504) 658-4200.
Southeast Louisiana Legal Services: Louisiana Legal Services provides free, civil legal aid to low-income people. They can provide legal assistance for landlord-tenant issues and much more. Go to or call (504) 529-1000 to receive more information.
Unemployment Insurance: currently inundated with applications and cannot guarantee payment as this time Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC) has released information for workers in Louisiana who have been impacted by COVID-19. Those who are eligible to receive Unemployment Insurance benefits will also qualify for SNAP benefits. As a worker, you may be eligible for unemployment insurance if: Your work hours have been reduced because of lack of work due to Coronavirus. Your work hours have been reduced because of lack of work due to Coronavirus. Your workplace closes temporarily, and you are not being compensated. You have been instructed not to go to work, and you are not being paid while at home. If any of these situations apply to you, you can file a claim for unemployment insurance by visiting or calling 866-783-5567. Be sure to answer “yes” to the question, “Are you filing for Unemployment Insurance benefits for reasons related to COVID-19?” This will provide needed information to the LWC to help process your claim.
NOLA BA Relief Fund of a relief fund for gig workers (i..e. Uber drivers); awards $500-1000 depending on determination of need. Application is on link. To qualify need proof of residence in Orleans Parish, proof that >60% of income is gig related, demonstrated loss of income due to pandemic, at or below 100% Annual Median Income Requirements: 1) Driver’s license, bill or bank statement proving residency 2) Independent Contractor Agreement(s) or other proof of gig-related employment 3)2018 or 2019 tax return 4) Bank Statements reflecting a minimum of 90 days of income activity prior to 3/9/20 5) bank statements reflecting compromised income for a minimum of 7 days post 3/9/20
Restaurant Opportunities Centers United link includes their application for financial help.
CORE (Children of Restaurant Employees) supply financial help to families, but only if one of the restaurant employees has been diagnosed with COVID-19 and has a child in the household due to the volume of applications they are receiving.
United Way Hospitality Cares Pandemic Fund

Docmentation Requirements: (1) 2018 or 2019 tax return (2) Government issued ID or driver’s license proving residency (4) Recent check stub showing proof of employment based on program qualification requirements
One-time award of up to $500. Qualifications: (1) Earn at or below the minimum ALICE household survival budget of $30,000 for an individual and $61,000 for household with children (2) Reside in United Way of Southeast Louisiana’s seven-parish service area, including Jefferson, Orleans, St. Bernard, St. Tammany, Plaquemines, Tangipahoa, or Washington parishes (3) Work in a Louisiana-based restaurant, bar or hotel between Feb. 1, 2020 and date of application (4) Are experiencing a financial emergency as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Entergy:entergy-neworleans.comFor the next 30 days, Entergy will halt customer disconnections if nonpayment is the result of the coronavirus. Customers can call 800-368-3749 or visit for more information.
Sewerage and Water Board
Cell Phones & ServicesCox will not terminate service to residences or small businesses that are unable to pay their bills due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus. For those affected, Cox will waive late fees as well.Verizon will waive late fees for residential or small businesses that have been impacted by the coronavirus. In addition, the company will not terminate service to any resident or small business because of their inability to pay their bills due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus. AT&T, CenturyLink, Sprint, and T-Mobile have also publicly committed to the “Keep Americans Connected Pledge” to ensure customers aren’t cut off from communications services during the coronavirus pandemic. This includes no shutoffs, no late fees, and making wi-fi hotspots available to anyone who needs them.
Catholic CharitiesTrinna Stanford, 450-9723,; Maria Heute, Reconcile Board Member/Catholic Charities Development Director mphuete@cox.netCatholic Charities has enacted our disaster case management for those impacted. If any interns or employees experience hardship, please contact Maria Huete (see email). She should be able to help with rental assistance, etc.
TCA UtilitiesTCA’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Sewerage and Water Board Assistance Programs are being suspended, effective Monday, 3/16. In accordance with the Emergency Declaration and supporting regulatory declarations utilities (ENTERGY and SWB) cannot disconnect services during the ememrgency declaration.
Golden Rule qualify need to have been employed in hospitality industry for at least 6 months. Grants given to help cover living costs (not paid directly to applicant but instead to landlord, electric company, etc.)
Mental Health Hotline SAMSA’s Disaster Distress HelplineCall 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor. When you call or text, crisis counselors will listen to what’s on your mind with patience and without judgment. There is no need to give any identifying information when you contact the Disaster Distress Helpline.
Women With A Vision(504) 302-8822Offices are closed, case management services including harm reduction information are available via phone.
Sexual Trauma Awareness & Response (STAR)Sexual Assault Hotline: (855) 435-STAR24/7 hotline, safety planning, all services are via telephone, including counseling, emergency assistance, and legal advocacy.
Catholic CharitiesLyn Shraberg, 201-4047, mshraberg@ccano.orgLyn Shraberg – Marque Fund and Crisis Counseling –
Virtual AA Meeting ID: 773 878 425 email – timmyr1070@gmail.comAA meeting at 9pm CST daily. Conducted in English. Attend by using Zoom or Google.
Virual NA MeetingsFor help finding a meeting can call (504)889-8840 or go to www.noana.orgVirtual NA meetings. Either call the number listed to find one or try telephone meetings M-F at 6:30am at 712-432-0075 Access code: 299757# or a virtual meeting Thurs-Tues at 6pm and Wed at 7pm at
*Junior League Diaper Bank (Partnering with Second Harvest Food Bank)
NEW! with Catholic Charities/Second Harvest Food Bank and works with Reconcile by providing diapers for the families of our young people. Please reach out to Second Harvest!
“Talking to Children About COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Resource”. for anyone with children to talk to them about Coronavirus and its impact; available in multiple languages
New Orleans Family Justice Center(504) 866-955424/7 hotline, safety planning, emergency protections orders, limited clinic availability, limited in-person services. All other services are via telephone, including counseling, emergency assistance, and legal advocacy.

Our Priority – Assisting Interns & Alumni

Buffet Day is Thursday, Feb. 20

YOU Are Our Secret Ingredient