msnbc.com
updated 8/25/2010 2:34:14 PM ET 2010-08-25T18:34:14

Five years after hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma wrought a trail of devastation across the Gulf Coast, there's still plenty of recovery and rebuilding work to be done.

The hurricanes of 2005 destroyed or severely damaged approximately 350,000 homes within 90,000 square miles from southeastern Texas to the Florida Keys and caused more than $81 billion in damage, according to the American Red Cross. They were the costliest hurricanes in U.S. history.

In the five years since the hurricanes, Habitat for Humanity says it has has built more than 2,200 homes in the region and repaired nearly 1,000 others through partnerships. But much work remains to be done.

"There is still a great need in the region, and Habitat’s 21 Gulf Coast affiliates continue to build, repair and rehab more than 400 houses a year with the help of volunteer labor and donations of money and materials," Kip Scheidler, Habitat's senior director, global disaster response, said in a statement. "Every anniversary gives us a chance to reflect on the work we’ve done and to recharge for the work ahead."

  1. More on Katrina, 5 years later
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    2. Newsweek: Oil industry benefits from Katrina aid
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Laura Paul, director of development, for lowernine.org, a nonprofit that is helping rebuild homes in the hard-hit Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans, says her organization has a wait list of more than 300 people wanting to return home.

"Conservative estimates have our recovery lasting another 10 years. We're not running out of work anytime soon," Paul said.

Vote: Should we continue to donate to Katrina victims?

"It's very easy to rally around a cause in the early days of a disaster, but the message needs to be that people need to support recovery efforts over time."

Habitat for Humanity and lowernine.org are among the organizations accepting donations or volunteer work for aid they or affiliates will provide to those still affected by the 2005 storms. Interested in donating or volunteering? Here is a partial list to check out.

American Red Cross
PO Box 37243
Washington, DC 20013
(800) HELP-NOW
www.redcross.org


American Friends Service Committee
1501 Cherry St.
Philadelphia, PA 19102   
(888) 588-2372
http://afsc.org/


AmeriCares
88 Hamilton Ave.
Stamford, CT 06902
(800) 486-HELP
www.americares.org


The Baton Rouge Area Foundation
402 N. Fourth Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802
(877) 387-6126
www.braf.org/


Catholic Charities USA
P.O. Box 17066
Baltimore, MD 21297-1066
(800) 919-9338
www.catholiccharitiesusa.org


Church World Service
475 Riverside Dr., Suite 700
New York, NY 10115
800-297-1516
http://www.churchworldservice.org


Episcopal Relief and Development
815 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017
(800) 334-7626
www.er-d.org


Feeding America

35 E. Wacker Dr., Ste. 2000
Chicago, IL 60601
(800) 771-2303
http://feedingamerica.org


Gifts In Kind International
333 North Fairfax Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 836-2121
www.giftsinkind.org


Habitat for Humanity International
121 Habitat St
Americus, GA 31709-3498
(800) 422-4828
www.habitat.org


HandsOn Network
600 Means Street, Suite 210
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 979-2900
http://www.handsonnetwork.org/

lowernine.org
6018 El Dorado Street
New Orleans, LA 70117
(504) 278-1240

http://www.lowernine.org/


Lower 9th Ward NENA
1120 Lamanche Street
New Orleans, LA 70117
(504) 373-6483
http://www.9thwardnena.org/


Lutheran Disaster Response
8765 West Higgins Road
Chicago, IL 60631
(800) 638-3522
http://www.ldr.org


Network for Good
7920 Norfolk Avenue
Suite 520
Bethesda, MD 20814
(888) 284-7978
www.networkforgood.org


Operation Hope

707 Wilshire Boulevard, 30th Floor
Los Angeles, California  90017
( 877) 592 HOPE (4673)
http://www.operationhope.org/smdev/


Operation Nehemiah
PO Box 73722
Metairie, LA 70033-3722
(504)-782-3337
http://operationnehemiah.com/


Operation USA
3617 Hayden Avenue, Suite A
Culver City, California 90232
(800) 678-7255
www.opusa.org/

Oxfam-America
226 Causeway St., 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02114-2206
(800) 776-9326
http://www.oxfamamerica.org/

Phoenix of New Orleans
2307 Bienville St.
New Orleans, LA 70119
(504) 322-3327
http://www.pnola.org/


Project Homecoming
3700 Gentilly Blvd.
New Orleans, LA 70122
(877) 942-0444
http://projecthomecoming.net/

Salvation Army
P.O. Box 4857
Jackson, Miss. 39296-4857
(800) SAL-ARMY
www.salvationarmy.org


Save the Children
54 Wilton Road
Westport, CT 06880
(800) 728-3843
http://www.savethechildren.org/index.html


Volunteers of America of Greater New Orleans

4152 Canal St.
New Orleans, LA  70119
(504) 482-2130
http://www.voagno.org/

Sources: msnbc.com research,American Institute of Philanthropy, National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster

© 2013 msnbc.com Reprints

Photos: Hurricane Katrina hits the Gulf Coast

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  1. Hurricane Katrina is seen in the Gulf of Mexico on Aug. 28, 2005. Katrina roared shore the next day packing sustained winds of 125 mph and was one of the strongest storms to hit the coast of the United States in the last 100 years. Katrina caused widespread devastation along the central Gulf Coast states. Cities such as New Orleans, La., Mobile, Ala., and Gulfport, Miss., were especially hit hard. (NOAA / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Arnold James of New Orleans tries to stay on his feet as a strong gust nearly blows him over on Aug. 29, 2005, when Katrina made landfall. The roof on James' home blew off, forcing him to make his way to the Louisiana Superdome for shelter. (Dave Martin / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Rescuers save a family from the roof of their vehicle, which was trapped by floodwaters on U.S. 90 on Aug. 29, 2005, in Bay St. Louis, Miss. (Ben Sklar / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. The Hyatt hotel in New Orleans saw most of its glass blown out as Katrina blew in on Aug. 29, 2005. (Charley Varley / Sipa Press) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Floodwaters pour through a levee along Inner Harbor Navigaional Canal near downtown New Orleans on Aug. 30, 2005, a day after Katrina passed through the city. (Vincent LaForet / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Looters make their way into a grocery store in New Orleans on Aug. 30, 2005. Flood waters continued to rise in New Orleans after Katrina did extensive damage. (Dave Martin / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. A woman walks through floodwaters coated with a layer of oil in downtown New Orleans on Aug. 30, 2005. (Bill Haber / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Evelyn Turner cries alongside the body of her common-law husband, Xavier Bowie, after he died in New Orleans, on Aug. 30, 2005. Bowie and Turner had decided to ride out Katrina when they could not find a way to leave the city. Bowie, who had lung cancer, died when he ran out of oxygen. (Eric Gay / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Vehicles damaged by Katrina floodwaters sit in mud on Aug. 30, 2005, in Slidell, La. (David J. Phillip / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. President George W. Bush looks out the window of Air Force One as it flies over New Orleans to survey the damage left by Katrina on Aug. 31, 2005. (Jim Watson / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Residents wait on a rooftop to be rescued in New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005. Authorities briefly suspended an evacuation of New Orleans after a reported shooting at a U.S. military helicopter. (Pool / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Residents are rescued by helicopter on Sept. 1, 2005, in New Orleans. (David J. Phillip / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Tam Cu, Jason Jackson and Linda Bryant look for belongings from Bryant's home on Aug. 31, 2005, in Biloxi, Miss. (Barbara Davidson / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. The body of a victim of Hurricane Katrina floats in floodwaters in New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005. (James Nielsen / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Flood victims pile into a truck as hundreds of others wait at the Convention Center in New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005, in order to be evacuated. (Eric Gay / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. A military helicopter makes a food and water drop to flood victims near the Convention Center in New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005. (Eric Gay / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Terri Jones tries to cool fellow flood victim Dorthy Divic, 89, who was overheated and exhausted at the Convention Center in New Orleans on Sept. 1, 2005. (Eric Gay / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. National Guard soldiers assist stranded victims outside the New Orleans Convention Center on Sept. 2, 2005. Thousands of troops poured into the city that day to help with security and delivery of supplies. (Mario Tama / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. A makeshift tomb at a New Orleans street corner on Sept. 4, 2005, conceals a body that had been lying on the sidewalk for days in the wake of Katrina. (Dave Martin / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Homes remain flooded to the roof on Sept. 5, 2005, in St. Bernard Parish near New Orleans. (David J. Phillip / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. A military helicopter drops a sandbag as work continues to repair the 17th Street canal levee in New Orleans on Sept. 5, 2005. (David J. Phillip / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Robert Fontaine makes his way through New Orleans' 7th Ward on Sept. 6, 2005, as a home burns down. Fontaine stayed in the Columbus Street house during the flooding to care for some dogs that were left behind. He was using candles for light, due to the lack of electricity, but one of the dogs knocked over a candle, causing the fire. (Shannon Stapleton / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Thousands of evacuees take shelter inside the Astrodome in Houston, Texas, on Sept. 5, 2005. (Jim MacMillan / Philadelphia Daily News via Abaca) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Search and rescue personnel go house to house in New Orleans on Sept. 7, 2005. (David J. Phillip / Pool via Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. Chicago-area firefighter John Swanson walks past a car in Meraux, La., on Sept. 15, 2005. Firefighters had to check approximately 20,000 evacuated homes in St. Bernard parish for survivors or bodies before residents were allowed back. (Jim Seida / msnbc.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. Two 160-foot fishing vessels straddle all four lanes of Highway 23 in Empire, La., on Sept. 12, 2005, after being pushed ashore by Katrina. (Jim Seida / msnbc.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  27. A statue of the Virgin Mary on the lawn of a New Orleans home peeks out from floodwaters on Sept. 10, 2005. (Chris Hondros / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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