Wellness

Where to Donate for Hurricane & Disaster Relief

Between Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, and now Hurricane Jose, and now Hurricane Maria, this year’s storm season is undeniably the worst on record—and it’s only getting started. There are many international, national, and local agencies doing incredible on-the-ground work, delivering food, water, diapers, and more—as well as helping residents rebuild. In Mexico, two powerful earthquakes left countless families homeless and in desperate need of support. For those of us who are thousands of miles away, sending money is one of the most efficient ways to help. This list is not exhaustive and we will continue to add more as relief efforts continue to develop. The devastation will certainly not be ameliorated this week, or even in the weeks to come—if you can swing it, ongoing monthly donations for the foreseeable future are particularly great, as it might take years for Texas, Florida, the Caribbean, Puerto Rico, and Mexico to rebuild.

Meanwhile, a million acres have already burned across Montana, Washington, and Oregon, displacing families throughout the region. While the devastation is not receiving as much coverage as the hurricanes, aid is needed there as well. Because there are so many fires, communities across the country have started funds for local families, and school districts where they need masks for the kids because the air quality is so poor. (Each state above is linked to a round-up for good places to send money.)

The Caribbean (Hurricanes Irma & Jose)

  • Halo Foundation

    Halo Foundation

    Focused on Barbuda, which was almost completely destroyed by Irma (90-95 percent of buildings are damaged), leaving nearly all of the population homeless.

  • SPCA International

    SPCA International

    When natural disaster strikes, many family pets are separated by their families—between that and homeless animals who need help, shelters are typically overrun. This international organization provides emergency aid to shelters and rescue groups to help them move and harbor animals safely.

  • St. John Community Foundation

    St. John Community Foundation

    St. John was hit incredibly hard by the hurricane (the island hospital lost its roof, forcing the evacuation of patients), and many residents expect it may take months to restore power. It is difficult for outside aid agencies to reach them currently, so this is a good place to start.

  • Center for Disaster Philanthropy

    Center for Disaster Philanthropy

    This philanthropy center focuses on medium, and long-term rebuilding efforts in order to sustain the period of giving, as many immediate response agencies are flooded with donations.

  • Save the Children

    Save the Children

    This international charity focuses on disadvantaged and disenfranchised children and families, i.e., those who are the most vulnerable during times of crisis.

  • OXFAM

    OXFAM

    Oxfam has been working in the Caribbean for 30 years, and is working particularly hard on issues like safe water and sanitation.

  • UNICEF

    UNICEF

    Specifically focused on vulnerable children, UNICEF works to ensure that there is safe water and shelter, as well as ongoing access to health services and education post-disaster.

  • St. John Rescue Inc.

    St. John Rescue Inc.

    This GoFundMe has been organized by the citizens of St. John’s, specifically for the St. John Rescue. The all-volunteer organization is chartered to provide emergency rescue and medical support services to St. John EMS, Police, Fire, National Park Service, VITEMA, and DPNR. They also do vehicle and structure stabilization, extrication, triage, Jaws of Life, portable AED, oxygen kits and island wide communication systems. At a minimum, all responding members are Certified Emergency Medical First Responders.

  • 21 US Virgin Island Relief Fund

    21 US Virgin Island Relief Fund

    Organized by basketball player Tim Duncan, who was 13-years-old when Hurricane Hugo destroyed his community in the Virgin Islands. He will match all donations up to $1,000,000.

  • Habitat for Humanity

    Habitat for Humanity

    This international nonprofit organization focuses on assessing damage in disaster zones, rebuilding, and getting displaced families into safe housing as fast as possible.

Florida (Hurricane Irma)

  • All Faiths Food Bank

    All Faiths Food Bank

    Based in Sarasota, this regional food bank consistently provides food to underserved communities, and is currently mobilizing to respond to Irma. They are a worthy destination for a donation, and will also need volunteers.

  • Feeding South Florida

    Feeding South Florida

    While traditionally focused on nourishing vulnerable families and kids, Feeding South Florida will be mobilizing for disaster response this week, as they are a staging site for FEMA. They have a massive storage warehouse, and will be working with local food banks to distribute as needed.

  • Humane Society of Greater Miami

    Humane Society of Greater Miami

    The Miami outpost of the Humane Society will need help, including money and supplies, as they will likely be inundated with misplaced pets, and will need to accommodate as many animals as they can.

Texas (Hurricane Harvey)

  • Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund

    Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund

    After fielding a massive amount of incoming calls looking for ways to substantially help Houston, Mayor Sylvester Turner and County Judge Ed Emmett established the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, which will provide ongoing support and disaster relief.

  • Houston Food Bank

    Houston Food Bank

    The Houston Food Bank is playing a critical role in delivering sustenance—a $1 donation provides three meals—to residents who have been displaced post-Harvey, including families and children who are already vulnerable. They are also accepting volunteers, you can sign up for shifts on their website.

  • Texas Diaper Bank

    Texas Diaper Bank

    This local agency delivers wipes, diapers, and other baby essentials to vulnerable families and elders. They are looking for diaper and wipe donations, as well as volunteers to help distribute the mass of diapers that came in post-Harvey.

  • Best Friends Animal Society

    Best Friends Animal Society

    This local animal shelter is working tirelessly to reconnect displaced pets with their owners (you can search a database on their site), as well as to continue to support homeless animals. They have a specific fund devoted to Hurricane Harvey.

  • BeyGOOD Houston

    BeyGOOD Houston

    A Houston native, Beyoncé is working with a handful of trusted local charities to provide those displaced by Hurricane Harvey with meals and essentials like feminine products, diapers, wheelchairs, bedding, and more.

  • The Montrose Center

    The Montrose Center

    Focused on the LGBTQ community, The Montrose Center created an LGBTQ Disaster Relief Fund will to help residents rebuild their lives. They provide counseling, case management, food, furniture, shelter, and more.

  • One America Appeal

    One America Appeal

    Created by our five living former presidents, One America Appeal is devoted to helping victims of Hurricane Harvey rebuild. Some staggering statistics according to their site: “More than one million people have been displaced by Harvey, which has caused up to $180 billion in damages to over 200,000 homes over a 300-mile path of destruction.”

  • Coastel Bend Food Bank

    Coastel Bend Food Bank

    Formerly known as the Corpus Christi Food Bank, this organization has consistently nourished the areas most vulnerable citizens. They have mobilized extensively for Hurricane Harvey victims and are actively seeking donations and volunteers.

  • San Antonio Humane Society

    San Antonio Humane Society

    The San Antonio Humane Society is harboring displaced pets, who are either separated from their owners or who lost their homes, along with shelter animals that they have retrieved from the gulf.

Puerto Rico (Hurricane Maria)

  • United for Puerto Rico

    United for Puerto Rico

    Beatriz Rosselló, the First Lady of Puerto Rico, collaborated with the private sector to bring this initiative to fruition, creating three designated help centers on the island. Donations can be made via phone or online.

  • Generosity

    Generosity

    Managed by the non-profit organization ConPRmetidos, donations from this charity will first go toward supplying affected inhabitants with food, shelter, water and other immediate needs–and then will focus on long-term recovery efforts.

  • GoFundMe: Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief Fund

    GoFundMe: Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief Fund

    This GoFundMe supports a growing coalition of various organizations, businesses, and individuals from both greater Los Angeles and Puerto Rico, including Puerto Ricans in Action, I Am HomeMade, El Floridita The Ricans Food, El San Juan BBQ, BrainsBlue, The Triple Threat Truck, Iniciativa Comunitaria, and Fundación Comunitaria de Puerto Rico, respectively–and others. The collective goal is to raise $7000 by October 7th.

  • Puerto Ricans in Action

    Puerto Ricans in Action

    Tangent to the Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief Fund, this effort involves entities in both Los Angeles and Puerto Rico that are working together to help rebuild the nations’s devastated areas, while providing immediate essentials to those affected.

Mexico Earthquakes 

  • Topos

    Topos

    Spearheaded in 1985 after Mexico suffered a devastating earthquake, this non-profit force delivers rescue teams, many which consist of first responders, to areas in need after a natural disaster hits. The organization is run solely by volunteers–clad in distinct red uniforms–who have received official training.

  • Crowdrise: Support UNICEF's Relief Efforts in Mexico

    Crowdrise: Support UNICEF's Relief Efforts in Mexico

    Actress and humanitarian Salma Hayek is raising funds via Crowdrise, a global fundraising platform, in effort to provide aid to those who’ve suffered from recent natural disasters in her home country. Hayek will personally match the first $100,000 raised to help fund UNICEF’s relief efforts, which has active response teams on the ground.

  • Project Paz

    Project Paz

    Founded in 2010 in NYC by a group of friends linked by their Mexican roots, this organization aims to help children affected by drug-related violence in Mexico–and it’s now extending its efforts to the nation’s youth who’ve been affected by the recent natural disasters.

  • Cruz Roja Mexicana

    Cruz Roja Mexicana

    The Mexican Red Cross is on site, working day in and day out, to help victims of either recent earthquake that caused major destruction in several states of the Mexican Republic. Monetary donations can be made online–and the organization has set up an Amazon Wish list as a way to garner needed supplies.

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