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How to Help fellow Texans after Hurricane Harvey

Written by , published August 28, 2017

 

call centerIt is in times of crisis when we truly get to see how many helping hands are ready to be deployed. It's a time when everyone's a neighbor and a friend. A time where the resilience of Texans shines through. We are in this together, so if you aren’t in the midst of holding your life together from storm damage, you’re watching helplessly. But there are ways to help.

Lost wages due to hurricane?

If you've missed work as a direct result of Hurricane Harvey, you may be qualified for Texas Workforce Commission's Disaster Unemployment Assistance?

Community Updates

We care deeply about the communities that are undergoing challenges as a result of Hurricane Harvey. We will share updates as we receive them, and cannot wait to help get these communities back on their feet!

Stay informed

For more information about Hurricane Harvey, including resources deployed and updated information, go to: fema.gov/hurricane-harvey. You can also download the FEMA mobile app in English and Spanish for shelter information, disaster resources, weather alerts, and safety tips. Residents in areas affected by this storm should use social media sites like Facebook or Twitter to reconnect with loved ones.

Stay Safe

American Red Cross helps you find shelter, list yourself as safe and search for missing family member.

Don’t drive on flooded roadways. Remember – turn around, don’t drown.

If you are in a high rise building and need to shelter in place, go to the first or second floor hallways or interior rooms. You want to stay on floors above floodwater or storm surge, but do not go to the highest floors due to wind impacts.

If you are under a tornado warning, seek shelter immediately in the center of a small interior room (closet, interior hallway) on the lowest level of a sturdy building. Put as many walls as possible between you and the outside.

Evacuation resources

Texas Department of Transportation will use Twitter feeds and Facebook to deliver storm preparedness, road condition and evacuation information to social media users. Follow these for up-to-the-minute transportation news and local traffic information.

TxDOT Travel Information Centers also are offering traveler assistance and highway conditions information at the individual centers and through (800) 452-9292.

Guides for traveling major highways in the region during an evacuation are also available. Activated evacuation routes will be reflected in current road conditions or by calling (800) 452-9292.

Statewide Highway Conditions or call toll free (800) 452-9292

Hurricane Evacuation Roadway Contraflow Brochures (Routes)

Hurricane Evacuation Contraflow Videos

National Hurricane Center

Donate to Relief Organizations

City of Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner has established the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund that will accept tax deductible flood relief donations for victims that have been affected by the recent floods.

Austin Disaster Relief Network is responding to help aid survivors locally and from Houston. Emotional care teams have been deployed, and survivor supplies are being collected and distributed daily.

Make donations to The Salvation Army by visiting helpsalvationarmy.org or calling 800-SAL-ARMY.

Text UWFLOOD to 41444 to make a donation to the United Way Relief Fund

Text the word HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation to The Red Cross. Or go online or call 800-RED-CROSS to donate even more.

Give Wisely

Before you send your heartfelt donation, make sure you know where your money is going. Do not make donations over the phone (not initiated by you), email or unknown social media pages. The Center for International Disaster Information recommends visiting a charity monitoring organization such as GiveWell, Charity Navigator or the Better Business Bureau before donating.

Donate to a food bank. Donations to the Central Texas Food Bank or San Antonio Food Bank help for those communities that have taken in many coastal evacuees. Or find local food banks here.

South Texas Blood and Tissue Bank welcomes your blood donation to help replenish a much-needed blood supply.

Texas Diaper Bank provides diapers for families displaced by floods.

Portlight focuses its efforts on helping displaced residents with disabilities or other special care needs.

H-E-B grocery stores have started a donation campaign where shoppers can make donations, at the register, for $1, $3 or $5.

AIRBNB is working with hosts to offer rooms for the displaced at no cost.

Global Giving international organization supports local charities.

International Relief Teams provide personal hygiene kits to flood refugees, among other emergency services.

Americares focuses on health, and has already deployed an emergency response team to Houston.

Direct Relief provides emergency relief and helps equip local health providers.

 

Volunteer

If you are able, volunteer your time with the organizations that are helping out. The American Red Cross, for example, could use volunteers and is putting those interested in volunteering through fast-track training. Here are a list of volunteer organizations, including The Red Cross that are sending out volunteers to help in various capacities with regard to Hurricane Harvey.

spcaRemember the Animals

Please don’t forget our furry friends. Organizations like the SPCA and shelters take on higher than normal volumes of displaced animals or animals that cannot stay with owners in shelters. Inland shelters are taking in hundreds of animals from coastal shelters, too.

The SPCA of Texas, for example, has taken in more than 100 cats from the Corpus Christi area and they plan to take in more. SPCA official say that, as the organization prepares to deploy disaster response efforts in North Texas to assist the Gulf Coast, support for this effort and for all of the programs and services is critical.

Along with financial donations to www.spca.org/give, the supplies most needed are cat litter, litter boxes, towels, blankets, large wire crates, toys, treats, pet beds, newspaper and gas gift cards. In-kind donations can be brought to the SPCA of Texas' Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center in Dallas or the SPCA of Texas' Russell H. Perry Animal Care Center in McKinney.

 

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