Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Tornado Relief Efforts: How Can You Help?

Following Sunday's outbreak of severe weather, which generated over 60 tornadoes and caused damage in several Midwestern states, including Illinois, Indiana and Missouri, many people are looking to contribute to relief efforts.

The destruction was widespread, leaving many with little the week before Thanksgiving. Below is a list of organizations already on the ground, for individuals looking to contribute to relief efforts:

Red Cross

The Central Illinois chapter of the Red Cross has established a shelter in the Illinois town of Washington. It also has activated the Safe and Well website to help in finding loved ones who may still be missing.

Salvation Army

Salvation Army had mobilized teams to areas that need emergency food and shelter. These teams are dispersed across the region to offer nourishment, shelter and guidance to the needy. The Salvation Army has established a way to give immediately; you can contribute by texting STORM to 80888 to make a $10 donation.

Team Rubicon

Team Rubicon is a group of veterans who come together after disasters to provide immediate relief and aid to rescue and recovery workers.

The Girl Scouts of Central Illinois have no report of loss or injury directly to any of their employees or to their properties. However, they do know that many Girl Scout families in the Washington, East Peoria, Pekin and Gifford areas have suffered damage as a result of the storms; in some cases the loss was tremendous.

For individuals looking to send donations directly to the council, each regional office will begin accepting donations of items on behalf of the disaster victims and they will coordinate the distribution of these items once they hear back from agencies coordinating as to what items are most needed. 

There have been offers from other councils and troops to fund uniforms, Girls Guides, badges and other items that Girl Scouts may have lost in Sunday’s tornados. The Girl Scouts of Central Illinois is establishing an account to aid in that effort. Individuals can send those funds directly to the Springfield Service Center, 3020 Baker Drive, Springfield, IL 62703 to the Finance department. Should the fund outgrow the need, remaining funds will be put into the GSCI Uniform Assistance Fund.

Our thoughts are with everyone affected by the tornadoes.