We’ve all seen the devastation in Southeast Texas that the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey has caused. The loss of life, destruction and relentless flooding continues to affect everyone in its wake.
Throughout the tales of horror, follow the tales of heroism.
There are countless stories of everyday people doing extraordinary things by helping their neighbors in need.
Although I live far from Hurricane Harvey’s path of destruction, I couldn’t feel closer to my fellow North Texans.
I met a remarkable group of Dallas volunteers who were compelled to action and drawn to lend a hand to the relief effort at the Trusted World Donation Drop-off location at 15660 Dallas Parkway in Dallas, Texas.
Nearly 100 helpers from across the city were pitching in to assist the victims of Hurricane Harvey by helping Trusted World sort through the clothing and donations provided by the generosity of the people of North Texas.
It was a moving experience to see people of all faiths, races, religions, nationalities, ages and genders pull together in impromptu fashion to organize the contributions.
The volunteers moved in effortless synchronization to help get the supplies to the evacuees waiting in Houston and throughout shelters within the state.
Cars were lined around the block with people who had purchased items to donate, like bottled water, diapers, formula, feminine hygiene products, socks, underwear and pet supplies. We helped unload the vehicles and sort the donations so they could be easily packed and transported.
I met a Dallas physician and his savvy senior mom who was visiting from India. Even though she was a world away from her home country, she felt a strong need to help out. That’s why she had her son bring her to the drop-off site to help sort and organize toiletries.
Then there was a group of elementary students who just got out of school for the afternoon and had their mom drop them off to help. Although they were among the smallest volunteers, they knew their efforts could make a big impact.
Finally, I was touched by another volunteer named Cheryl who was from Houston and working in Dallas on a temporary assignment.
Her family was currently trapped in a flooded home and was awaiting rescue. Cheryl continued to monitor their status via cell phone while she tirelessly worked through her volunteer shift and greeted every donor’s car with a smile.
Even though Cheryl couldn’t be there to help in Houston, she was in Dallas doing what she could to support the relief effort. She said it helped her feel connected through the long waiting and unbearable uncertainty.
Unfortunately, I still don’t know what happened to her family.
The outpouring of support for the Hurricane Harvey victims seemed to fuel the volunteers’ fast-paced activity.
A local radio station broadcast live from the donation drop-off site with upbeat music to energize the volunteers as they worked while TV news crews and helicopters flew above to capture continuing wave neighbors helping neighbors.
Quite simply, it’s a story with one reoccurring theme that we’ve seen throughout Hurricane Harvey time and time again.
It’s about people extending caring compassion to those who needed it most.
In a country which has been recently dominated by news events surrounding the nation’s divisiveness, it was an amazing blessing to witness how enormous tragedies can often reveal the true spirit of humanity.
Ways You Can Make a Difference:
- Donate money, volunteer your time or give blood to the American Red Cross Hurricane Harvey relief effort.
- Trusted World is currently in need of:
- New underwear and socks (all sizes)
Feminine hygiene products
Baby diapers, wipes and formula
- New underwear and socks (all sizes)
Donations can be dropped off weekdays between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. between now and mid-September. You can also make a donation here.