Evacuee Shelter at Camp Williams is Shutting Down Today

Evacuee Shelter at Camp Williams is Shutting Down Today

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Sam Penrod ReportingThe emergency evacuation center set up at Camp Williams for evacuees of Hurricane Katrina is now closed. Today the last of the evacuees left.

For the last 23 days, Camp Williams has been the home for hundreds of evacuees from New Orleans. In just three weeks all of them have been now been transitioned into temporary housing along the Wasatch Front, or, in some cases, permanent homes here in Utah.

When the evacuation center opened up on September 3rd, hundreds of evacuees called Camp Williams home. Some were there just a few days, while others have been there longer. Overall, 538 people were brought to Utah.

More than 33-thousand meals were served to them and the Red Cross provided 140-thousand dollars in financial assistance. Those involved say it proved to be a successful operation.

Col. Scott Olson, Utah National Guard: "A greater appreciation for the citizens and organizations and businesses of Utah, that overwhelmingly responded with donations, in materials, food or just the volunteers that stormed the gates."

Several community and religious organizations plan to follow up with all of the evacuees who are still here in Utah. They will make sure they are making the transition and receiving what they need, including making sure school children are able to get the necessary help in the schools.

The big question today is how much did the evacuation center cost to operate? The final figures are not in yet, but the state expects that FEMA will reimburse almost all of the costs.

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