Watching the news after Hurricane Harvey hit has been a really difficult experience. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted by the hurricane. To my readers who call Houston and other parts of Texas home, I love you. This community stands with you through thick and thin.
People are displaced. Homes are ruined. There will be millions of hours of rebuilding in the days to come. The crisis is far from over. It can be hard to figure out how to step out and help after a natural disaster like Harvey. The best thing we can do right now to support people impacted by the hurricane is to donate to credible organizations who are also close to the communities most affected. It's easy to be intimidated by such large organizations. You are left feeling like you don't have much to give but I promise you, every little bit counts.
I encourage you to be safe with your money and use credible organizations. I wish we could wipe all the scammers away but the sad reality is that some people try to profit off of tragedy. When it comes to knowing where my money is going, I use Charity Navigator to do my research before donating. It's a simple site. I've been using it for 6 years now and it was the go-to site for credibility when I worked at one of the world's largest nonprofits.
Want to help meet the needs of individuals impacted by Hurricane Harvey? Here is a list of local and national organizations with good hearts:
Help a Family
If you are looking to donate to an individual cause related to Hurricane Harvey, check out all the campaigns GoFundMe gathered together in one space.
If you are someone in the Texas or Louisiana who can offer shelter to people in need, Airbnb has lifted all service fees now through September 25. You have the chance to get or give shelter.
Save the Pets
Houston Humane Society is an accredited charity helping save those pups and other animals after flooding hit the area.
I read this Bustle article about helping fulfill the Amazon Wishlist created by a law firm in Texas that rallies to meet needs whenever a crisis such as this one happens. Hop onto Amazon and add a few items to your shopping list today.
MAP is working with trusted partners to provide hygiene kits to those in need after Harvey. These kits include soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste and other essential items to help prevent the spread of disease.
As we all know, babies need diapers (and lots of them). Give to the Texas Diaper Bank to help families with little ones.
In a crisis like this one, we rarely think about underwear. It's a vulnerable need but someone has to take care of it. I'm loving Undies for Everyone and how they spread their mission around Houston.
Cribs + Kiddies
I love and support Save the Children for their work all over the world. I worked for them after college and got to see, firsthand, the impact they make on the lives of children everywhere.
There are a ton of local food banks in and around the most affected areas. We need to stay mindful that areas outside of Houston are recovering too! Corpus Christi Food Bank is one of the many credible nonprofits to support during this time.
Texas Needs More Love Letters
Lindsey Meeker-- a longtime supporter of More Love Letters who became a friend of mine when I visited Tulsa-- is collecting love letters for those devastated by Hurricane Harvey. While we know nothing can take the place of monetary donations at this time, affirmation and tangible support
While we know nothing can take the place of monetary donations at this time, affirmation and tangible support are still critical when it comes to our local communities around the world.
We encourage you to rally friends, family, your college community and write love letters to those impacted by Harvey. You can send the letters to the following address: