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In Wake of Sandy, How You Can Help - Donations of Food & Bottled Water Needed

When residents struggled with power outages, major closings, and limited services when Hurricane Sandy struck, United Way of Southeastern Connecticut assessed available resources and items that are most in need at this time.

As a result, United Way is seeking donations of shelf-stable, non-perishable food items and bottled water. Although United Way was initially collecting clean blankets, batteries and flashlights in the immediate aftermath of Sandy, the focus has now shifted to food and water. There are five local drop-off locations for these contributions:

  • The Gemma E. Moran United Way Labor Food Center, 374 Broad Street, New London from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m, Monday - Friday;
  • The Hampton Inn, 300 Long Hill Road, Groton;
  • The Residence Inn, 40 Whitehall Avenue, Mystic;
  • The Comfort Inn, 48 Whitehall Avenue, Mystic; and
  • United Way of Southeastern Connecticut, 283 Stoddards Wharf Road (at the corner of Route 12), Gales Ferry from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday.

If you would like to make a financial contribution, please click here to contribute securely online.

Scott Barlow, General Manager of Residence Inn Mystic and Comfort Inn Mystic, has kicked off this effort with a $500.00 gift from the Waterford Hotel Group charitable foundation. Mr. Barlow told United Way, “We are extremely concerned about our entire region. We have associates without power. We know what we are all going through together. Our hotels are happy to serve as a drop off for United Way because we have to unite in order to get through the next several days as temperatures drop.

“We want no one to be cold,” Mr. Barlow continued. “People will need flashlights, batteries, shelf-stable food, or blankets. Who might be out there that we don’t know about? This United Way effort to serve those who may be at home without support means a lot to us.”

“This unprecedented storm has deeply affected our region, and we are feeling that as most of our staff remain without power,” said Virginia L. Mason, President and CEO of United Way of Southeastern Connecticut. “As temperatures drop over the next few days, we want to be sure that those who need extra blankets, food, flashlights, bottled water, and batteries are helped. We are currently surveying our Food Center feeding sites and are calling towns to determine the extent of estimated need. Both the Gemma E. Moran United Way/Labor Food Center and United Way will be open to receive donations. We are also very grateful to the three local hotels which have so generously offered to help receive donations.

“Sandy has not deterred us from our goal to help people in need,” Mason continued. “We are asking those who can to please donate items that will greatly assist families struggling with power outages. We have cold weather ahead. I know this is a caring community, and I am confident we will join hands and pull together during this difficult time of current hurricane recovery situation.”

“Working together as a community – our hotels and foundation are all about helping the community,” Mr. Barlow added. “We have a long history of helping to employ the homeless, collecting donations, giving linens and supplies when we have them, and keeping our fingers on the pulse of what’s going on. We assist the MASH program in Mystic and work to help those families achieve employment. We are grateful for being able to assist and will continue to work with United Way to monitor the situation as it progresses. We hope that power is restored and everyone is secure as quickly as possible. This drive means a great deal to us; our community was hit hard by water and wind.”

If you are without power or know someone in need, United Way 2-1-1 has continually updated information on shelters & other emergency resources. Just dial 211 or go to www.211ct.org. United Way 2-1-1 is staffed and available 24/7, 365 days a year.