The recent images of flooded-out Houston – homes under water, desperate citizens being rescued with only the clothes on their backs – brought back some tough memories for Jedidiah Gant, who almost a year ago spent two days trying to retrieve his children from their grandparents’ home in an underwater Robeson County.
After Hurricane Matthew last fall, Gant, feeling helpless but wanting to help, organized Raleigh businesses in a fundraising effort called Rally + Relief, which raised $30,000 for the North Carolina Community Foundation.
Gant put the gang – about 30 local businesses – back together this year to help the people of Houston.
This Saturday, a growing group of Raleigh businesses will donate a portion of their sales to Rally + Relief, with the money ultimately going to the Greater Houston Community Foundation.
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“I was watching the news and those feelings from last year came back and I felt this need to do it again – not only because it was successful, but because people and organizations were so happy to help,” Gant said.
“Just like Robeson, the Houston flooding was unexpected and they thought it was going to pass over, and it ended up hitting both of those areas in a 500- or 1,000-year flood kind of way.”
Gant ran the idea by Jake Wolf, the owner of the downtown Raleigh restaurant Capital Club 16, who helped Gant with the first Rally + Relief event.
We’re all in, Wolf told him.
As of Wednesday, Gant says 30 to 35 businesses are in with more added every day. There’s also a music benefit Saturday night at Slim’s, which will donate all the door and 50 percent of the bar proceeds. There’s a similar benefit in the works for Kings around the start of October.
Gant says giving the money raised to the Greater Houston Community Foundation means the money goes directly to that community.
“I didn’t take it lightly, who to donate to,” Gant said. “I asked experts in the field, which is the same way I found North Carolina Community Foundation last year. ... I want the money to go from one community to another community.”
- Arrow Haircuts (All Locations)
- Boulted Bread
- Capital Club 16
- Crank Arm Brewing Company
- DECO Raleigh
- Father & Son
- Hawks and Doves
- Manhattan Cafe
- Midtown Grille (North Hills)
- Myriad Media
- Oak City Chiropractic
- Oak City Cycling Project
- Oakwood Pizza Box
- PBX Pilates and Barre
- Person Street Bar
- Raleigh Denim
- Raleigh Wine Shop
- Slingshot Coffee (online orders)
- Standard Foods
- Yellow Dog Bread Company