How to Help
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For those of us living far from the danger zone,Â it's hard not to feel helpless; this disaster seems so insurmountable.Â But what the wounded region and its displaced residents need now is resources. If you want to help, even in some small way, AlterNet has compiled a list of worthy outlets.
- The Salvation Army says a "$100 donation will feed a family of four for two days, provide two cases of drinking water and one household clean-up kit, containing brooms, mops, buckets, and cleaning supplies."
- ACORN, the nation's largest community organization of low- and moderate-income families, seeks help in urging Congress to provide more assistance to hurricane victims.
- Air America radio has set up a toll-free public voicemail system to help lost people find each other.
- America's Second Harvest, a food bank network, has delivered 7.7 million lbs of food to the disaster area, and promises that 100% of its donations are going directly toward feeding Katrina victims.
- Veterans for Peace has organized volunteer bus trips to the affected region, and has set up a temporary camp in Covington, LA. Aside from needing more volunteers on the ground, the group seeks specific items, including baby food, formula, diapers, baby wipes, Pedialyte, sterile gloves, and electronic devices.
- The AFL-CIO is seeking to gather 1,000 union members willing to volunteer wherever they're needed. The group is also collecting donations through its Union Community Fund.
- Native New Orleans rapper Master P and his wife Sonya Miller have set up teamrescueone.com.
- The Red Cross has been under heavy traffic, as millions of Americans have been donating. Yahoo has posted a dedicated page for Red Cross donations.
- The Humane Society of America has deployed disaster teams to help rescue the thousands of trapped, injured and abandoned animals in the danger zone. The HSUS is currently seeking donations to help fund these missions.
- AmeriCares has sent disaster response teams to Mississippi to assess the needs of millions affected by the hurricane.
- Feed the Children has sent 25 truckloads of materials to Mississippi and Louisiana, and is sending more to affected areas in Texas and Georgia.
- Roomate Click is offering free housing services to New Orleans' homeless, as is Katrina Housing.
- Progressive bloggers have united in the hopes of raising $1 million for Red Cross' Katrina relief effort -- DropCash.com is collecting the donations and keeping the running tally.
- MoveOn.org has set up a Web site, Hurricane Housing, where Katrina victims in need of shelter can connect with people willing to open their doors to help.
- Operation USA has two warehouses of supplies in Los Angeles that will be sent to the areas hit by Katrina as soon as possible.
NAACP Disaster Relief Efforts
The NAACP, America's oldest civil rights organization, is setting up command centers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama as part of its disaster relief efforts. NAACP units across the nation have begun collecting resources that will be placed on trucks and sent directly into the disaster areas. Also, the NAACP has established a disaster relief fund to accept monetary donations to aid in the relief effort.
Checks can be sent to the NAACP payable to:
NAACP Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund
4805 Mt. Hope Drive
Baltimore, MD 21215
Donations can also be made online.
You can mail or ship nonperishable items to the following locations, which we have confirmed are REALLY delivering services to folks in need:
Center for LIFE Outreach Center
121 Saint Landry Street
Lafayette, LA 70506
attn: Minister Pamela Robinson
Mohammad Mosque 65
2600 Plank Road
Baton Rouge, LA 70805
attn: Minister Andrew Muhammad
Lewis Temple CME Church
272 Medgar Evers Street
Grambling, LA 71245
attn: Rev. Dr. Ricky Helton
St. Luke Community United Methodist Church c/o Hurricane Katrina Victims
5710 East R.L. Thornton Freeway
Dallas, TX 75223
attn: Pastor Tom Waitschies
S.H.A.P.E. Community Center
3815 Live Oak
Houston, Texas 77004
attn: Deloyd Parker
Laura Barcella is AlterNet's front page editor.