When Hurricane Laura rolled through Southwest Louisiana at the end of August a lot of homes were damaged or destroyed. Among the damaged homes were houses of worship. While many of those houses of spiritual and faith renewal will be counting on a helping hand from a much higher power, they could qualify for help from an Earthly entity as well.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA has announced that private non-profit houses of worship could be eligible to receive FEMA grants if they qualify. The grants would help cover costs of repairs or replacement costs for facilities that were damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Laura.

Houses of worship in Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Jeff Davis, and Vernon Parishes could qualify for the FEMA grants if they meet the following criteria.

1.They are owned or operated by a private non-profit organization

2. They have damage sustained August 22nd through 27th 2020 directly related to Hurricane Laura.

3.They have not received funding after applying for a U.S. SBA disaster loan to repair or replace their facility.

4.They must provide a current ruling letter from the IRS regarding tax exemption under certain sections of the IRS code.

If your church or house of worship would like further clarification on what is needed to apply for these FEMA grants that information will be available at your parish emergency management office or you may visit the GOHSEP (Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness) website. The link to that is right here.