I recently returned from a trip to New Orleans in which I gutted houses for folks through a community organization. During my time there we worked in the Gentilly, the 9th Ward, and Bywater districts - areas with extensive damage. Other hard hit areas are New Orleans East, Mid-City, Lakeview, St. Benard and Plaquemines Parishes, and the Mississippi coast, although in reality the entire Gulf Coast region has suffered damage.
I took some pictures on the trip, as a way to illustrate the devastation of the hurricane, and to show the condition of the city six months afterwards. As a co-volunteer said, "much has been done, but much hasn't been done, as well".
The entire hurricane affected area, not just New Orleans, is in need of public and private infrastructure repair, including the electrical grid, gas lines, levees, schools, businesses, apartment buildings, firehouses, and hospitals. The Gulf Coast area took a major financial hit because of the storm, and many people were wiped out.
The area is unique in America because of its history, culture, and music - and, I believe, its reconstruction is worth supporting.