2017-09-01 / Editorials

The hurricane hit hard, but you can help

As the rain fell in thick fat sheets, a small aluminum boat motored slowly across the murky water. At the wheel was a man dressed in a rain jacket and waders. Sitting on the bow was another man wearing a hard hat and slicker. Huddled between them was a woman clutching three small girls, each outfitted with a life vest. In the background, the tops of street signs poked out of the water, the only evidence that this was once dry land and not a 4-foot-deep lake.

The video of the boat rescue shown earlier this week on the Houston Chronicle’s website illustrated the extreme conditions under which emergency crews—trained and civilian alike—worked as they plucked desperate residents from the flooding waters caused by the relentless Hurricane Harvey.

The historic flooding has forced the evacuations of hundreds of thousands. Flooding is affecting residents in Louisiana and parts of Arkansas, too, and the dollar damage will be more than Katrina and Sandy combined, officials are now saying.

Some places received more than 40 inches of rain in just four days, an amount this area hasn’t seen in almost four years combined. It’s hard for local residents to imagine flooding of this magnitude, but the pictures of those affected don’t lie, and their pain has become our pain.

You can help.

Here are a few of the leading—and accredited— emergency-relief groups accepting donations to help those in their hour of great need:

The American Red Cross services the Houston area. Donations can be made at www.redcross.org.

The Greater Houston Community Foundation and Mayor Sylvester Turner have established the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. Donations may be made at www.ghcf.org.

Global Giving has raised over $1 million as of Tuesday. To donate, visit the website at www.globalgiving.org.

The Salvation Army is accepting donations at www.salvationarmy.org.

United Way of Greater Houston has a donation page at www.unitedwayhouston.org.

Feeding Texas is a statewide food bank. Its website is www.feedingtexas.org. Similarly, the Houston Food Bank is also in need of donations at www.houstonfoodbank.org.

Also located in the Houston area, the Coalition for the Homeless coordinates shelter for those displaced from their homes. Donations to the coalition can be made at www.homelesshouston.org.

Other charities that need donations include the Texas Diaper Bank at www.texasdiaperbank.org and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Texas at www.spca.org.

There are, of course, many more worthwhile charities banding together to assist the men, women and children struggling in the face of this natural disaster. Let’s reach out to those in need of our help. Because even though it’s Texas today, it could just as easily be us tomorrow.

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