With record rainfall and flooding across 50+ counties in South East Texas, East Texans are asking how they can help. In an effort to assist donors, East Texas Communities Foundation has compiled a list of resources to guide donors interested in helping those displaced by Hurricane Harvey.
“East Texans have shown time and time again they are very compassionate and always willing to help those in need,” said Kyle Penney, President of East Texas Communities Foundation. “Recovery from Hurricane Harvey will take years. At this time, cash donations to trusted nonprofit agencies will provide the greatest assistance to those in the disaster areas.”
Unfortunately, scam artists also emerge after disasters to prey on the charitably inclined. Spam emails or social media posts seeking donations for Harvey victims might look legitimate, but it’s best to check out the group if you’re unfamiliar with it. “There are several online resources to verify if an organization is a trusted nonprofit,” said Penney. “Charity Navigator or Guidestar provide free, detailed information on nonprofits. If you are still not sure, we encourage you to call our offices as our staff is equipped to provide you with reputable organizations helping disaster victims.”
Suggested agencies serving the needs of flood victims include:
Greater Houston Community Foundation: After receiving an overwhelming number of inquiries from citizens and companies who wanted to help, Mayor Sylvester Turner established the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund at the Greater Houston Community Foundation.
Communities Foundation of Texas: In response to several natural disasters in the North Texas Region, CFT created a Disaster Relief Fund targeting long-term recovery efforts in the affected areas.
Texas Baptist Men provides emergency assistance during times of disaster using trained volunteers. You can make donations online or by texting HURRICANEHARVEY to 73256
Catholic Charities provides food, clothing, shelter and support services to those from all religious backgrounds.
Save the Children provides cribs, formula and other necessities to families of children forced to evacuate their homes.
Samaritan’s Purse mobilizes staff and equipment to bring relief to homeowner’s after major disasters. Volunteers will tarp roofs, cut trees, and perform mud-outs—tearing out waterlogged walls and flooring and taking damaged belongings to the curb.
If you wish to volunteer in response to Hurricane Harvey, please visit the Texas Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (TXVOAD) page for organizations that include volunteer engagement as a key component of their operations. “We encourage East Texans to be patient and do not self-deploy, as showing up to the communities that have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey will create an additional burden for first responders,” said Penney.