| November 9, 2012 -
As recovery efforts continue in the Northeastern United States from the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy, Mayor Madeline Rogero is urging all Knoxvillians who want to help to work only through established groups and networks.
"Our hearts go out to those still suffering from the aftermath of this terrible storm. We know it will be a long process of recovery," Mayor Rogero said. "Throughout the past week, my operations staff, along with Alan Lawson, director of our local Emergency Management Agency, have been in continuous contact with local, state and federal officials in the affected areas. They have emphasized that the best way to help is to provide donations or assistance through well-organized and established agencies, who are already on the ground working with victims."
Anyone wishing to contribute can find details on the website of the Federal Emergency Management Agency , through Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters or through agencies such as the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army.
A few things to remember:
Cash donations are better than donations of food, clothing or other goods. Direct funds allow the organizations involved to respond quickly to the specific needs of people in the affected areas.
Before you respond to any solicitation for donations, be sure to check that the person or agency involved is a legitimate organization playing a role in the recovery efforts.
Anyone who wants to volunteer should also do so only through established agencies or groups. In past disasters, well-intended people who arrived without any affiliation or designated role have simply added to the confusion and difficulty of providing effective assistance.
For many of the people affected by Hurricane Sandy, restoring their property, homes and lives will take weeks, months, or longer. The needs will linger long after public attention fades.
"Our staff will continue to monitor the recovery effort through Emergency Management networks, and we will respond to any needs that arise," Mayor Rogero said. "Disasters can strike anywhere, and we all have to be ready to assist in any way we can."