Past Missions

Hurricane Katrina Emergency Mapping

Date: September – October 2005
Duration: 2 months
Location: Greater New Orleans Area


When Hurricane Katrina devastated Greater New Orleans on 29 August 2005, Global MapAid initiated rapid deployment. Our mission was to collect data and produce maps showing victims where they could find aid.

The result:

The GMA team produced 50,000 maps directing victims to various aid stations, medical facilities, supply stations, community assistance centres, and more. On the reverse of the maps were emergency numbers. They also made food distribution maps for the American Red Cross vehicles to follow.


The team of volunteer mappers included Elisabeth Huff, Heather Carlisle and Brody Dittemore. The maps were made from seven templates, ranging across the New Orleans city and environs. During this time, GMA came into contact with FEMA, which is how we gained the support of Harsh Prakash who is now a board member.


During this period, GMA kicked off an informal working relationship with The University of New Orleans Geography Department who helped with map distribution and also Americorps*VISTA (like VSO in the UK) whose Volunteers helped with data collection.


The Team also helped to co-create, with a local government agency, a map series for aid workers involved in emergency food distribution in the Covington area, just north of New Orleans.


Below are some examples of the maps used in 2005: