As we watched the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey unfold in Texas this weekend, our hearts ached for all the people affected. With every news update, we realized that the damage caused by Harvey would be unprecedented, and that it’s going to take the communities affected years to recover.
Amid all the devastation, there were stories of hope and good. We were inspired by the incredible stories about people coming together to help each other. There were many reports of people, who saw the calls for volunteers on Facebook and Twitter, driving for hours to bring their flat bottom boats to help rescue those trapped in their homes. Others, whose homes survived the flooding, opened their doors to neighbors and strangers in need of a dry place to stay. Hundreds more volunteered to help with relief efforts in any way they could.
In this time of great need, people tapped into their innate desire to connect and came together to do good. As heartbreaking as they may be, disasters often bring out the good in all of us. We put aside our differences and do whatever we can to help one another. The support people offer each other helps us carry on.
Unfortunately, the disaster is not over yet. The rain will continue to hit Texas and Southwestern Louisiana over the next few days, and even after the rain stops the road to recovery will be long and hard. In the coming days, months, even years, communities will need our continued support in order to recover and rebuild. That’s why we are so fortunate to work with organizations like the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) that are focused on smart funding and are dedicated to helping communities recover from disasters.
CDP was established after Hurricane Sandy to ensure that funds donated to specific disasters are effectively applied. CDP connects donors and organizations with relief efforts, and helps them make more thoughtful decisions in order to maximize the impact of donations and the increase the amount of good they can do. Essentially, they connect people for good.
While working with CDP over the past few years, we have been continually inspired by their innovative approach to disaster funding. We are donating our communications services to help CDP connect with donors and increase support for the CDP Hurricane Harvey Recovery Fund. Emotionally, we would all like to be on the ground assisting, however, by donating to CDP, we have the opportunity to help make long-term impact.
To increase connections, CDP, in partnership with the Council on Foundations, will host a webinar, Hurricane Harvey Recovery: How Donors Can Help. The webinar will bring together representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), along with disaster responders and nonprofit foundations in Texas, to share how to allocate resources—human, financial, and technical—to meet the needs of Hurricane Harvey-affected communities. Please join us in spreading the word about CDP’s efforts. Now more than ever, we must all connect for good.