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VISTA Reflections: Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief

 “As an Americorps VISTA, I felt it was my duty to respond in some way to the call for help following the devastation caused in our community by Hurricane Sandy. I was glad to be able to help by working at the Gemma E. Moran United Way Labor Food Center. I worked to inform towns and agencies that the food center and other locations in the community would serve as a hub for disaster relief items such as food, water, blankets, batteries, and flashlights. I then helped to sort and distribute the items that had been donated.

Disaster Grants Available to Union Plus Program Participants

Union Plus Disaster Relief Grants of $500 are available to help eligible participants in the Union Plus Credit Card, Insurance, or Mortgage programs who are facing financial hardship due to the disaster. The money does not have to be repaid. Funds are limited to the nearly $370,000 available in the Union Plus Disaster Relief Fund.

To qualify for a Union Plus Disaster Relief Grant, you must:

Red Cross Offers Cold Weather Safety Tips

As temperatures drop for the next few days, the American Red Cross wants everyone to stay safe and warm. Exposure to cold and snow can cause injury or serious illness, such as frostbite or hypothermia, and as temperatures drop, people may resort to alternative heat sources, which can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning or fires. Red Cross offers the following tips on how to best care for yourself and your family when temperatures drop:

At home:

Town by Town Donation Collection Locations

The following towns and sites have generously offered to serve as collection points for those wishing to donate non-perishable food, bottled water, clean blankets, batteries, flashlights and other emergency supplies to others still struggling in the aftermath of Sandy. Items will be distributed to people residing in that town. You may also drop off any of these items at United Way or the Gemma Moran United Way Labor Food Center.

Local Businesses "Challenge" Community to Match Donations to United Way Relief Efforts

The New London law firm of Faulkner & Graves, P.C. has made a donation of $500.00 to United Way of Southeastern Connecticut’s relief efforts in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. The contribution matches an earlier gift of $500.00 from the Waterford Hotel Group that kicked off the effort.

The firm hopes to “challenge” others to contribute as well, in the form of financial contributions or non-perishable food items, bottled water, clean blankets, batteries, flashlights, and other supplies that are needed during this time.

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:

United Way Announces New London County Fund to End Homelessness

Under the leadership of State Senator Andrew Maynard, New London County has received a state grant of $250,000 to support efforts to prevent homelessness of families and to re-house homeless families and single adults. United Way of Southeastern Connecticut will serve as the grantee, working in close cooperation with local providers of service to the homeless.NLC Fund to End Homelessness Launch

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