Hurricane help: Give money, food, goods to help Harvey, Irma survivors

September 20, 2017

All day on Wednesday, WRAL and the Food Bank of Central and Eastern NC are ‘food-raising’ for those affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. During this daylong Hurricane Relief Food Drive, we asking for food donations and cleaning supplies. The donations will be delivered to food banks in Texas and Florida.

WHEN: From 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017

WHERE: Bring donations to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern NC, at 1924 Capital Blvd. in Raleigh, or to American Tobacco Campus, 123 Vivian St. in Durham.

In Rocky Mount, several businesses at Rocky Mount Mills, 1151 Falls Road, will accept donations during their normal operating hours. Koi Pond Brewing Company, TBC West: Tacos & Taproom, Tipsy Tomato, Ramblers Bottle Shop and The Battle House all are participating in the donation drive. Find locations, hours on the Rocky Mount Mills website

WHAT: The most-needed items after a natural disaster are:

The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina is already planning to send three truckloads of donations to to Florida and/or Texas:

1 truck of mixed dry goods: snacks, non-perishables, easy to eat items

1 truck of sweet potatoes

1 truck of items donated by NC Correctional Enterprises: large cans of vegetables and fruits.

Following Hurricane Matthew last year, the Food Bank is still helping to support with food, water and supplies for several hundred people in Edgecombe County who are displaced and living with relatives and in FEMA trailers. There are many others who are waiting on their homes to be rebuilt or repaired.

The Food Bank is also working with the Red Cross to help approximately 100 people in Robeson, Wayne, Lenoir, Bertie, Pender, Sampson, Columbus, Cumberland, Edgecombe, Hoke and Pitt Counties who are still in long-term recovery mode from the storm.

The Food Bank received incredible support from our wonderful community following Hurricane Matthew last year. We know how long it takes for people to restock and rebuild after such devastating storms, and couldn’t continue to do it without the generosity of North Carolinians and food banks across the country. We stand ready to help our sister food banks in Florida and Texas however we can, for as long as is needed.

After two major hurricanes, catastrophic flooding is affecting hundreds of thousands of Americans in the Houston area, on islands like Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and from Florida throughout the southeast.

Our first reaction is to reach out. There are a variety of ways you can help:

The American Red Cross has launched a massive relief response after hurricanes Harvey and Irma, offering shelter, food and financial aid to those in need.

The Salvation Army has sent trained disaster volunteers and employees from across the county to Texas, the Gulf Coast and Florida. A mobile feeding kitchen from Wake County is heading to Florida to provide physical, emotional, and spiritual care to survivors and relief workers impacted by Hurricane Irma. A total of 10 Salvation Army canteens from the Carolinas are mobilizing to provide assistance. Monetary gifts will have the greatest and fastest impact on those impacted by the hurricanes and the first responders flooding to their aid.

The United Way has created specific relief funds to support the local communities of Texas and the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Harvey and the Southeast United States and Caribbean after Hurricane Irma. Donate online or text UWFLOOD to 41444.

AmeriCares is distributing water, aid and emergency medicine and supplies. Every $10 donation results in $200 of aid.

Catholic Charities provides food, clothing, shelter and support services to those from all religious backgrounds.

Samaritan’s Purse is air-lifting emergency items including blankets, shelter plastic, hygiene kits, and water purification units – enough for 2,000 families – to the Caribbean island of St. Martin, where Hurricane Irma did extensive infrastructure and building damage and water and food supplies are dwindling. Additional emergency flights are planned in the days to come for additional hard-hits areas of the Caribbean.

Walmart is matching customer donations 2 to 1 with cash and product donations of up to $10 million to support American Red Cross disaster relief. Walmart will provide necessities like water, infant formula, diapers, underwear and personal hygiene products to those in Houston’s mega-shelters and will increase comfort in shelters by providing TVs, DVDs, games and stuffed animals for children and healthy snacks, such as fresh fruit.

Baptists on Mission will also be collecting donations to send to Harvey relief efforts. The organization says 100 percent of designated gifts will be used to help relieve flood victims.

Houston Food Bank and the Food Bank of Corpus Christi are also asking for donations.

The Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund of Houston’s mayor, Sylvester Turner, is administered by the Greater Houston Community Foundation.

The Florida Disaster Fund is the State of Florida’s official private fund established to assist Florida’s communities as they respond and recover from natural disasters. 100 p[rcent of funds raised will go toward disaster-related response and recovery; there are no overhead costs.

Volunteer Florida Foundation is coordinating volunteer opportunities in response to Hurricane Irma.

The humane societies of Houston and San Antonio and the Houston Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have set up an animal emergency response hotline (713-861-3010) and are accepting donations online.

?The ASPCA is coordinating evacuation and care for animals moved out of the paths of the storms to emergency shelters.