Local Emergency & Community Services
After these past few weeks our nation has come together in a big way to help all of those affected by the tornadoes that caused so much devastation across our midwest states. Whether it be sending money, getting in a vehicle to just be there for the victims, or being a part of the emergency services that act at a moments notice to take care of every aspect that is needed for each community there was always someone there to help.
As we try to explain what has happened to our children, we find that they feel they need to help. We have forever instilled in them how important it is to be there for a sibling, friend, classmate or anyone who is hurting. Now your children want to put it into action. Ways they can help are often hard to come up with due to very few opportunities for children and the locale in which they live. Service Learning projects for the family in this situation could seem like a miniscule endeavor, yet any amount of care and help would be appreciated greatly.
Many newspapers, websites, and blogs have reported ways Americans can help. Most of those ways are for individual adults sending money to certain organizations. Some of the larger organizations, like Red Cross, prefer money right now so that they can be ready at a moments notice to give where it its most needed. I am going to share areas where the whole family can help and feel that they were a part of something wonderful. Later I will also state organizations you might want to contribute to (Monetarily) as well.
Service Learning Projects For Families
Local – Have your family make cards for the emergency service workers in your area. Let them know how important they are for everyone in your community. Bring them down to the police department, fire department, National Guard, Military Services if you live in an area that one is based and even city hall.
Local – Go to a nursing home near you. Ask the administration which one of their residence was a former emergency service worker before they retired. Have your family make cards for them to thank them for their service. Take them to the nursing home. Hopefully they will allow you to hand deliver them. If so, shake their hands to let them know how much you appreciate them.
- Local – Everyone loves a lemonade stand. Make sure there are not any city ordinances not allowing one at your residence. If everything is o.k. go ahead and set up a stand that your whole family is involved in. Make signs that tell the customers where your profits are going. Some ideas are: The Red Cross, Team Rubicon, DonorsChoose for Teachers. All of these organizations will put the money you raised into the midwest states.
- Local – As stated in an earlier Service Learning Project post, have your family go to your local animal shelter. Even though you might not be able to help those animals in the areas affected by the tornadoes, you can help the animals in your community. Ask if there is anything you can do to help the shelter. Your children will feel the satisfaction of helping so much.
- Local and Beyond – Start a Food, Penny, Clothes, Book, Diapers and Baby Needs and Woman Type Product Drive for the victims in the midwest.
- Local and Beyond – Put together care packages for the victims and the emergency services volunteers.
- Beyond – Adopt a school that was damaged by the tornadoes. Find out what is needed and collect items through out the summer.
- Beyond – Go to the Toys-For-Tots website and find out what is needed for the victims and start a collection drive to try to donate to children in the midwest, rather than waiting until Christmas time.
- Beyond – Go to the Arbor Day Foundation website and find out what is needed to purchase trees to be replanted in the path of destruction. Next find out if there is a volunteer service that would be willing to plant the trees for you if you and your family cannot be there to do so.
Organizations to Donate Money to: (Found on USA Today website: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/05/20/help-tornado-victims/2344493/
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross has several shelters open in Oklahoma and Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicles have begun delivering hot meals throughout the affected areas. The Red Cross is also working to link loved ones in Moore who are OK through a website called Safe and Well. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief, donate online or by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.
The Salvation Army is activating disaster response teams and mobile feeding units to help residents and rescuers in Moore, as well as in other locations in the Plains and the Midwest that were impacted by tornadoes. Donate online or text STORM to 80888 to contribute $10 to the Salvation Army’s relief efforts or make a donation by phone at 1-800-SAL-ARMY. If you’re sending a check make sure you put the words “Oklahoma Tornado Relief” on the check, and mail it to: The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 12600, Oklahoma City, OK 73157.
AmeriCares has a disaster relief team working with first responders and local health care organizations on the ground in hard-hit Oklahoma City suburbs. Shipments of water, medicines and emergency aid have been sent, with more shipments underway. You can help by donating through the AmeriCares website or by phone at 1-800-486-HELP. Text LIVE to 25383 to make a $10 donation. You can also mail a check or money order to: AmeriCares, 88 Hamilton Ave., Stamford, CT 06902.
Los Angeles-based international relief agency Operation USA announced it’s providing emergency aid where needed to community-based health organizations across Oklahoma. Donate online, by phone at 1-800-678-7255, or by check made out to Operation USA, 7421 Beverly Blvd., PH, Los Angeles, CA 90036. You can also donate $10 by texting AID to 50555. Corporate donations of bulk quantities of disaster-appropriate supplies are also being requested.
Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief
Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief says it has deployed at least 80 volunteers to respond to severe weather in Oklahoma. Those interested in helping can make a tax-deductible donation to the BGCO’s Disaster Relief ministry online or call (405) 942-3800. You may also send checks to: BGCO Attn: Disaster Relief 3800 N. May Ave. Oklahoma City, OK 73112.
Feed the Children
Feed the Children, which is headquartered in Oklahoma City, has transported bottled water and food to the impacted area. The organization is accepting diapers, canned goods, non-perishable food, snack items, water, sports drinks, and cash donations. Text “Disaster” to 80888 to make a $10 donation. After receiving a confirmation message you must type “yes” to complete the donation. Cash and corporate donations can be made online or by phone at 1-800-627-4556.
Samaritan’s Purse, which provided relief to residents of Moore after the devastating tornado in 1999, deployed two Disaster Relief Units from their North Carolina headquarters before dawn on Tuesday. One will be based in Moore, and the other in Shawnee. Samaritan’s Purse is looking for volunteers to help with the relief effort. You can donate online or by phone at 1-800-528-1980. To give by mail, please send donations to: Samaritan’s Purse, P.O. Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607-3000.
Save the Children
Save the Children is mobilizing staff to provide support, relief and recovery services to communities and families in Oklahoma. The organization is prepared to deploy their Child Friendly Space kits in shelters, creating safe play areas for kids. They are also ready to deploy infant and toddler hygiene materials to support young children displaced from their homes. Text TWISTER to 20222 to donate $10 to Save the Children and help the response effort. You can donate online or call 1-800-728-3843.
Operation Blessing International
Operation Blessing International, a Virginia-based humanitarian group, is deploying to Moore, after working on tornado relief in Granbury, Texas, following last week’s storm there. A caravan of OBI emergency equipment was sent to Moore, including a construction unit, mobile command center, trucks full of tools and supplies, and a team of construction foremen. You can donate to the group online or donate by phone at 1-800-730-2537.
As posted the other day… from the book “I Like Helping” by Justine Korman Fontes …
And… Just so you know… You can be like Nick, the elephant and have your cookie and eat it, too!
Have fun, families!! Remember to Always Make the Most of Every Moment!