CADDO PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Serving as a beacon through a storm is the thought behind a project called Community Lighthouses that looks to help citizens weather a storm.

The Community Lighthouse project was announced earlier this year. City and faith leaders came together Wednesday evening to go over its details and plans for the future.

It was a packed house inside Morning Star Baptist Church that will serve as the first of two locations for a Community Lighthouse. The goal is to be a place to weather a disaster. Large-scale solar panels will be installed along with backup batteries and generators so that when weather strikes the power will always stay on. They will also have storage capabilities for an emergency water supply.

Leaders spoke about how this was needed during the mass power outage during the summer and the winter freeze of 2021 when thousands lost power for days, even weeks. People died in Caddo Parish and across the state. The goal is to prevent that from happening again.

“Strengthen our disaster response by focusing on disaster preparedness. Rebuilding social infrastructure at the neighborhood level,” said Pastor John Henson, the Highland Center Ministries.

They detailed how the lighthouse locations will store solar energy and be able to give back to the grid in times of need.

The billion-dollar project came from state and congressional dollars, plus philanthropic funding by North Louisiana Interfaith and Together Louisiana, and the Caddo Parish Commission. Morning Star and the Highland Center will be the first locations. It will then expand to 20 other projects in Caddo Parish with 86 across the state.