Our thoughts are with the millions of people affected by Hurricane Sandy. At times like this, we are always reminded of how important it is to show the people we love how much we appreciate them every day.
The storm and its aftermath – flooding, fires and the shut-down of infrastructure – will take months, even years, and billions of dollars to recover from. Right now, responders are taxed to the breaking point dealing with immediate needs. Americans are generous people and always quick to respond with disaster relief. Here are some tips to make sure your efforts are directed where they’ll do the most good:
· ABC News has an excellent article with links to reputable charities where you can donate cash or volunteer to help.
· Blood banks are always challenged by the demands that follow major disasters. America’s Blood Centers is North America’s network of non-profit community blood centers. Use their online tool to locate a blood bank near you.
· Through a network of more than 200 food banks and 61,000 food pantries, emergency shelters and soup kitchens, Feeding America is able to reach into disaster affected communities with basic needs and supplies including food, water and cleaning products. It is anticipated that the service areas of 25 to 35 Feeding America food banks could be adversely affected by Hurricane Sandy. Learn how you can help their effort.
· Be aware that natural disasters can happen anytime, anywhere. Your best chance of surviving is to prepare for the eventuality. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a comprehensive guide to help you do that. Download the PDF here.
Hug someone you love. Don’t wait until disaster strikes. Do it now and often.