Donations pouring in for Irene victims

Pamlico County (Viewer submitted image)
September 1, 2011 10:42:54 AM PDT
Donations have already started to come in to the North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund.

Officials said the money would be going to those hit hardest by Hurricane Irene.

After Hurricane Floyd in 1999, the Disaster Relief Fund raised $22 million. This time organizers said they could only hope for that kind of support.

With more than 1,100 homes destroyed and thousands more damaged, Hurricane Irene has left its mark not only on property, but also on North Carolina families.

"There are many people in our state that need help," said Faye Stone with the NC Disaster Relief Fund. "I would just encourage them to give."

Stone said donations have just started coming in, but more help is still needed. Donations provide food, medical services and other supplies to hurricane survivors.

"They're also used to supplement long-term repairs and rebuilding efforts for homes that were damaged or destroyed," she said. "We mainly focus on those individuals who are under-insured or who have no insurance."

Since the North Carolina United Way is processing donations for free, every dollar donated goes directly to the relief fund.

"We're really excited that people are getting the message out there," Stone said. "There's lots of people with lots of needs."

The fund was last activated after Hurricane Floyd. From spare change from children to big donor checks, millions poured in.

Organizers said they are hoping for the same as donations trickle in from as far away as California.

"We've received donations from New Jersey and Virginia ... two states that were also affected by Hurricane Irene," Stone said.

Donations can be made at: www.ncdisasterrelief.org. and www.american.redcross.org

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