The outpouring of aid to devastated areas is our human nature and best accomplished by accepting donations from all. As a long-time community volunteer, I was involved in collecting canned goods, bottles of water, clothing and resources to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Our PTA readily collected supplies for three days at Reedy Creek Middle School and received donations from our local community, enough to fill a huge trailer whose driver and services were donated.
We found a church that was more than happy to distribute our items, and we received a tremendous thank you from all those who benefited. We got there quickly. It was great for our community to know that we had directly helped another.
While there is certainly a place for FEMA, the Red Cross, the Salvation Army and large agencies, churches and communities do a wonderful job in disaster relief, and a lot of Hurricane Sandy victims will be grateful to receive whatever help they can get. Families, friends, and neighbors do the outreach first, churches and organizations next, then FEMA will eventually get moving.
We really can’t expect for the government and large agencies to do everything. We must all pitch in our own way.
Marie Toyama McEvoy