It's hard to see the communities where we work and live devastated by Hurricane Florence.
While the storm is no longer a threat, the untold destruction, caused by deadly winds, record rainfall, and historic flooding, is far from over. And as our neighbors begin the arduous task of cleaning up, repairing, and rebuilding their homes and businesses, you may be wondering what you can do to help. So here are some suggestions if you're unsure where to start.
The Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina: The Food Bank will continue to provide food, water, and supplies, for as long as it is needed during the recovery efforts. The most needed items are high-protein canned meals, paper products, such as paper towels, plates, and cups, and cleaning supplies. You can find a complete list of items needed here.
North Carolina Bar Association: The NCBA's Young Lawyer Division is coordinating the North Carolina Disaster Legal Services efforts to provide disaster-related resources and services to storm victims and affected attorneys. Volunteers are welcome and you can donate to the NC DLS fund here.
North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund: The relief fund is currently accepting contributions for Hurricane Florence damage. Donations can be made online or text "Florence" to 20222. You can also register to volunteer.
United Way of North Carolina: The nonprofit established a statewide fund called UW Helps NC to help meet immediate needs following the storm. Text "UWHELPSNC" to 41444 to donate from your phone. Residents who need help can also dial 211 to be connected to a specialist who can help them find the resources they need.
American Red Cross: In addition to donating money, the American Red Cross is also in need of volunteers willing to work a 6 to 12-hour shift in Eastern North Carolina. Apply here to volunteer.
NBA Cares: Basketball legend Michael Jordan, who grew up in Wilmington, which was hit hard by the hurricane, set up a microsite to direct donations to reputable organizations.
Diaper Bank of North Carolina ("DPNC"): The Durham-based nonprofit is collecting diapers and hygiene products for people displaced by the storm. DPNC is also seeking volunteers.
Of course, this is a small list of organizations and charities working to help storm victims get back on their feet. But we should not forget about furry friends. Animal shelters are being inundated with rescued animals, and if you are looking to help try contacting your local pet shelter or visit the American Humane Society.