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Thread: What NOT to do for disaster victims

  1. #11
    Thank you for your updates and your good work! I remember a woman from Church World Service calling clothing donations one of the disasters that follows a major disaster. I sympathize with you on that front.
    Church World Service is an umbrella organization for 35 denominations in the US that provides disaster relief, aid and development assistance. To check out their information on the floods and tornados go to this link: CWS appeal update: April and May 2007 flooding and tornadoes
    Thanks to my sister, we own a leg lamp.

  2. #12

    Time to Bump this thread

    Sorry, but with the tornadoes in the South, this will now be timely again.

    I have volunteered at Salvation Army now enough to know that clothing is nearly always needed. It's just not needed at disaster sites. Victims are provided with ample new clothes. They have lots of other, more pressing, needs.

    Please help channel people's desire to help into something other than clothing drives.

    BTW, here in Kansas we have coat drives in the fall. I saw first hand how those coats benefit poor families. Usually there will be a cleaners that will take the coats and clean them for the charity. Here in Topeka, that's been Scotch, who cleans them for the Salvation Army. I gave a few away at the Christmas distribution, too. They were in the garage, so I grabbed the bag of toys, and had them stashed behind the receptionist's desk while we got the coats. You should have seen the kids' eyes when I grabbed their toys. They quickly realized that I wasn't really taking the toys away, and all was quickly well. They were happy to have warm coats, you could see that.

    But I digress. Let's not have clothing drives for the recent tornado victims. Seek out worthy local charities, instead. You can read the reasons above, if you haven't already.

  3. #13
    Platinum Contributor
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    Thanks for reposting. We need help in Tennessee!

  4. #14
    Great info! Thanks for bringing this back up.

    As for those who don't have cash to give, time is the one thing we all have the same amount of. As Topeka Tom said, if you're not in the affected area, you can certainly help out your local agencies who have sent their people to the affected area. Even if you only do one shift, it all helps.

    As for clothing and household goods, there are always agencies who take that stuff all year round and either distribute it or sell it so that when disasters happen, they have cash to send. Don't hold on to it until there is a disaster.... as Tom has indicated, it just clogs up the system at that point.

  5. #15
    In the wake of the Alabama, Joplin, MO and Oklahoma, OK tornados, it's probably a good time to bump this topic once again. In brief, please don't start a clothing drive for Joplin or Oklahoma City. Rather, help out locally, and send cash if you can.

    If you can join a volunteer group that responds to disasters, great. Two good examples: Salvation Army and the Southern Baptist kitchen crew (no doubt they have a more official name).

    For the curious, I've not been called out to the state emergency operation center in the past four years, I've only served on our canteen at a drowning and a house fire. I think the parade doesn't count.

    With the nearby disasters in Joplin and Oklahoma, we will be quite "thin" if something happens in Kansas.

    If I can have one request, please pray for the folks in Joplin. They are dealing with extreme losses and the local resources will be virtually nonexistent. When Topeka Barb and I were blown away in 1988, there were only roughly a dozen homes totally destroyed. That was a completely different situation. We could go the the hardware store and buy anything we needed, and we could rent a big truck to put all our furniture and appliances in. In Joplin, they have nothing.

    Tom

  6. #16
    Tom, thanks for your service and information.

    Here in the St. Louis area one of the malls that is related to a mall in Joplin is holding a drive: clothing toys and books, diapers, baby food and formula, soap and shampoo, toothbrushes and toothpaste.

    Given the magnitude of the Joplin devastation, do you think any of these items would be helpful? My teenaged DD wants to hold a drive at her school and take the items to the mall. This is her first spontaneous desire to help and I hate to shut her down. But I also hate sending useless items to a disaster scene.

    Thanks,
    Susan
    Puppymom in MO

  7. #17
    Gold Contributor
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    Important to listen to local requests

    Some of the items may be welcomed. Here in Minneapolis, the Salvation Army requested donations of items such as baby and children's clothing, personal care items (soap, toothbrushes and toothpaste, etc.), bottled water, baby formula and baby foods, and small toys and books to occupy small children in shelters. A local TV station set up a receiving area, and also had volunteers manning the phones to accept monetary donations.
    Up here the officials on the scene emphasized the importance of donations to the Salvation Army and Red Cross.
    Jeanne

  8. #18
    Please excuse me, I'm a Dick. Not a moron just a Dick
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Topeka Tom View Post
    In the wake of the Alabama, Joplin, MO and Oklahoma, OK tornados, it's probably a good time to bump this topic once again. In brief, please don't start a clothing drive for Joplin or Oklahoma City. Rather, help out locally, and send cash if you can.

    If you can join a volunteer group that responds to disasters, great. Two good examples: Salvation Army and the Southern Baptist kitchen crew (no doubt they have a more official name).

    For the curious, I've not been called out to the state emergency operation center in the past four years, I've only served on our canteen at a drowning and a house fire. I think the parade doesn't count.

    With the nearby disasters in Joplin and Oklahoma, we will be quite "thin" if something happens in Kansas.

    If I can have one request, please pray for the folks in Joplin. They are dealing with extreme losses and the local resources will be virtually nonexistent. When Topeka Barb and I were blown away in 1988, there were only roughly a dozen homes totally destroyed. That was a completely different situation. We could go the the hardware store and buy anything we needed, and we could rent a big truck to put all our furniture and appliances in. In Joplin, they have nothing.

    Tom
    Stranger!

    Where ya been? How ya and Topeka Barb doing?
    RCI Member Since 24-Aug-1989/150-plus Exchanges***THE TIMESHARE GRIM REAPER~~~Exchanging/Searching/SW Florida/MO/AR/IA/Consumer Advocacy/Estate Planning/Sports/Boating/Fishing/Golf/Lake-living/Retirement****Sometimes ya just gotta be a dick

  9. #19
    Tom, your volunterism is much appreciated. I heard on tv that a group here in NC was getting a huge truck and hoping to feel it with clothes , food, other things. I hate to hear that so many times people who think they are doing "good" is for fraught.

    I am hoping to volunteer for our local food bank. I have to find something that gives me a sense of purpose since I'm not working anymore. shaggy

  10. #20
    Thanks for the advice. I just notice that benefits and the damages are mostly not covered or the insurance settlement did not cover all losses.

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