KATRINA BABIES is a documentary focused on how the children felt during Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath when the levees flooded New Orleans. It is mind-blowing to think that “no one ever asked them” what it was like to look out and only see water everywhere around their neighborhoods and inside their homes. 

This was extremely difficult to watch. These children are now in their late 20’s and early 30’s. They were interviewed and asked questions that made them relive those frightening, devastating days. It triggered deep emotions that most had buried. Every single “child” responded with the same reply. No one ever talked to them about the upheaval and stress they lived through. There were no counseling sessions. Suddenly, they were uprooted from their community, friends, family, and the only life they knew. Their lives were never to be the same. “New Orleans would never be the same.”

The biggest takeaway was how do you make children feel safe? In 2005, the society asked, “What was wrong with the youth?” Nothing was wrong with them. They were traumatized and in “flight or fight” mode.” How do they heal when “trauma defines them.” KATRINA BABIES showed these emotions through home movies taken during their ordeal, news clips, and creative animation. The pacing was fast and well-edited. The director (Edward Buckles Jr) spoke to those who knew what they were talking about. Nothing was held back. It was intimate and heartfelt. Their insights and observations broke my heart again and again. 

KATRINA BABIES should be shared as one of our country’s greatest mistakes. But, we cannot turn away. We need to see the truth to heal and do better. This is must-see TV. It is available to stream on HBO MAX.  

Esta Rosevear

Esta Rosevear has been a Theatre Arts teacher and director for 35+ years, published Children’s author of the Rebecca series, and is passionate about playing her violin, walking, gardening, and reading murder mysteries.

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