Hurricane Florence has hit the North Carolina coast, already causing massive flooding in inland towns along rivers. Meteorologists are anticipating that Florence will linger and move further inland over the weekend, which means a lot of people are going to need rescue and relief. Here’s how you can help.
Though it’s quite easy to donate to the American Red Cross via text, and they’re incredibly well-known across the country, they’re also an organization that’s been plagued with accusations of mismanagement and other mistakes. In general, it’s often best to contribute to local groups who have a better idea of what’s needed and a smaller internal infrastructure sucking up money. For the purposes of this article, we’re focusing on those.
The North Carolina Community Foundation (NCCF) is a “highly-rated charity currently providing aid to the Carolinas ahead of Florence” according to ABC News, and it partners with local charities, so you know your money is being directed by people most familiar with the area. Here’s their website for donations.
There are also South Carolina and Georgia state chapters of the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster who each offer recommendations of which relief organizations they would choose, if you want to investigate where your money is headed.
Finally, there’s The North Carolina Disaster Fund, which purports to assist with “unmet needs in the aftermath of a disaster.” These are the groups that will be in the Carolinas helping people get back on their feet long after the waters recede.
Team Rubicon is a group of military veterans who mobilize for rescue efforts in disasters. According to their website, they have 9,979 volunteers across VA, NC, SC, and GA and have already positioned equipment and boats along the coast to sweep in where they’re needed.
Americares focuses on health in disaster relief, and they currently have a response team ready for North Carolina:
“The storm is on track to make a direct hit on the East Coast and impact much of the southern United States in the coming days,” Americares Director of Emergency Response Brian Scheel said in a statement Monday. “Our response team has been activated and is ready to meet the immediate health needs in affected communities.”
GlobalGiving supports local and grassroots groups working to restore areas hit by disasters, and they’ve already started their Hurricane Florence relief fund. Some of that money will be directed towards immediate needs, but much of it will go towards long term projects restoring the community once the storm has passed.
American Humane and the Charleston Animal Society
Don’t forget our furry friends. Vulnerable animals will need to be rescued from homes where they are abandoned and shelter animals will also be in need. National nonprofit organization American Human and the Charleston Animal Society are already helping move cats and bunnies around and above the water line in Virginia and the Carolinas.
Finally, if you happen to be within range now or in the next few weeks (or possibly months), you can volunteer. Quartz offered this list as a starting point:
We’ll continue updating this list with resources as more become available.