Local relief efforts underway to help Oklahoma

The images of destruction in Oklahoma have encouraged some in Michiana to step up and help.

A semi-truck filled with food departed from the Feed the Hungry warehouse late Tuesday afternoon. While the group does a lot of work assisting in disasters overseas, staff realized that victims in Oklahoma would need as much assistance as possible.

“We start immediately,” said Robert Boucek, director of logistics for Feed the Hungry. “Yesterday we saw they were going to need help.”
A warehouse employee worked the forklift most of the morning to get things ready for transport.

“We’re pulling things out of our inventory that are needed in the first stages,” “So, lots of water and Gatorade.”

As the truck makes its way to Moore, Okla., the staff at Feed the Hungry is just getting started.

“That is what this is about, “ Boucek said. “How do we show compassion, to meet you in your time of need.”

Over at the St. Joseph County American Red Cross office, the emergency services director awaits a call from organizers on the ground in Moore.

“The leadership team for the Red Cross is on the ground assessing the need,” said Doug Farmwald, from the Red Cross.

There are already 12 volunteers ready to go to Moore if they are needed.

“Someone has to be there to pick up the pieces,” Farmwald said. “We won’t be able to make it all go away. But, we can get people in the right direction.”

A call for volunteers is expected by Wednesday.

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross you can call 1-800-RED-CROSS or text Red Cross to 900999.

Others are planning local donation drives to contribute to the recovery.

A “Moms Helping Moms” donation drive is scheduled for Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. outside the La-Z-Boy store on Main Street in Mishawaka.

The drive will focus on collecting supplies for the children affected by the tornado.

Below is a list of the items they are looking for:

crib mattresses
high chairs
nursing covers
breast pumps
wet wipes
Formula, powdered
nursery/distilled water (gallons)
canned formula
pajamas- cotton and fleece
shoes for toddlers/kids
socks of all sizes
bottled water
can openers
changing pads
car seats
bottle brushes
cotton swabs
first aid kits for babies/kids

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