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Help out during Harvey: Where to donate locally

Photo: Texas Military Dept

UPDATE: WLOS will hold a "Standing Strong for Texas" fundraiser Friday at the NC Apple Festival.

From 4:30 a.m. - 7 p.m. WLOS will broadcast live from the festival in Hendersonville. Viewers can bring checks by our News 13 live truck, which will be parked on 2nd Avenue West off Main Street.

Checks can be made out to "Salvation Army Hurricane Harvey" with "Sinclair Cares" in the memo line. WLOS can accept checks only, and cannot take cash donations.

If you are unable to see us at the Apple Festival, you can also mail checks to 110 Technology Drive, Asheville NC, 28803 until September 6, 2017.

ADDED Sept. 1: There will be a diaper drive from 4-7 p.m. at the Chick-fil-a at 170 Merrimon Drive.

Here in the mountains, the Asheville-Mountain Area Chapter American Red Cross and Hearts With Hands are helping affected people, and Brother Wolf Animal Rescue is helping animals.

The Red Cross needs money and volunteers. Donation and contact info for the Asheville Red Cross are here.

Hearts With Hands is an Asheville-based Christian, nondenominational, humanitarian, non-profit 501 (c) 3 organization that says it provides provides "physical, spiritual, medical, economic and other necessary aid to victims of poverty, natural disaster, or famine."

Hearts With Hands is accepting donations for its Harvey relief efforts here.

On Monday Hearts with Hands is now collecting donations for the third truck to send to the Hurricane Harvey victims in Texas. The Broad River Fire Department will be accepting sanitary items, baby wipes and diapers ONLY at the main station. Those items need to be new and unopened. The BRFD says it will make arrangements to have all items collected taken to Hearts With Hands.

Take donations of food or water to the Hearts With Hands warehouse in Swannanoa. On its website, Hearts With Hands says it has made preparations to set up in Corpus Christi, Texas to provide supplies and support.

Call ahead to confirm when you can deliver your donation, but the Hearts with Hands warehouse is at 850 Warren Wilson Road in Swannanoa.

Hearts With Hands says it needs the following supplies for Texans:

  • pop-top canned goods
  • dry cereal
  • canned meat
  • peanut butter
  • dry milk
  • 100 percent fruit juice
  • Gatorade
  • prepackaged snack items
  • bleach
  • disinfectant
  • mops
  • buckets
  • rubber or plastic gloves
  • sponges
  • brooms
  • trash bags
  • diapers
  • baby wipes
  • baby formula
  • baby food
  • blankets
  • sheets
  • pillows
  • cots
  • non-prescription drugs
  • Band-Aids
  • medical tape
  • ointments
  • disinfectant spray
  • paper plates
  • paper cups
  • paper towels
  • toilet paper
  • plastic flatware
  • bottled water

Crossfire Diesel Alliance is an Asheville truck enthusiast group that is holding a donation meet on Friday, September 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the parking lot next to the Tastee Freeze on Patton Ave in Asheville. Crossfire says it will be collecting from a list of supplies needed for the victims impacted by the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, and taking the donations down to Texas.

Here's Crossfire's list of supplies needed by people in Texas:

  • Non-perishable foods/snacks
  • bottled water
  • baby forumla
  • diapers
  • first aid kits
  • dog food
  • clothing
  • blankets
  • hygiene products
  • toiletries

Samaritans Purse with Billy Graham Ministries has also been responding to help victims.

BBB Wise Giving Alliance suggests that donors keep the following tips in mind to help avoid questionable appeals for support as Harvey affects Houston, or any time you want to lend a hand:

  • Understand crowdfunding. Keep in mind that some crowdfunding sites do very little vetting of individuals who decide to post for assistance after a disaster, and it is often difficult for donors to verify the trustworthiness of crowdfunding requests for support. If you decide to contribute via crowdfunding, it is probably best to give to people who you personally know that have posted requests for assistance. For more Give.org tips on crowdfunding, check out this Wise Giving Wednesday post.
  • See if the charity has an on-the-ground presence in the impacted areas. Unless the charity already has staff in the affected areas, it may be difficult to bring in new aid workers to provide assistance quickly. See if the charity’s website clearly describes what the charity can do to address immediate needs.
  • Find out if the charity is providing direct aid or raising money for other groups. Some charities may be raising money to pass along to relief organizations. If so, you may want to consider “avoiding the middleman” and giving directly to those that have a presence in the region. Or, at a minimum, check out the ultimate recipients of these donations to see whether they are equipped to provide aid effectively.
  • Be cautious about gifts of clothing, food or other in-kind donations. In-kind drives for food and clothing, while well intentioned, may not necessarily be the quickest way to help those in need – unless the organization has the staff and infrastructure to distribute such aid properly. Ask the charity about its transportation and distribution plans. Be wary of those who are not experienced in disaster relief assistance.
  • Verify the trustworthiness of soliciting relief organizations by visiting Give.org to access free reports that specify if the charity meets the 20 BBB Standards for Charity Accountability.

Fleet Feet Sports Asheville is also collecting items. Fleet Feet Sports is accepting donations of new or gently-used running shoes and new socks to send to stores in Texas, which will work to get the shoes and socks to organizations and people in need.

If you can suggest a local place to volunteer or donate to Harvey relief, message News 12 at news@wlos.com, and we'll add to our list.


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