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What is the most useful thing -

What is the most useful thing -

Old 07-01-2019, 07:26 AM
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Default What is the most useful thing -

that can be donated to a family or a community after a disaster?

Not a new topic or discussion - but - I think it deserves to be brought up again.

I think in many cases, money/cash and/or useful labor would probably be most wanted.

Many of us think "a quilt" - but for the amount of time and money spent on a quilt, how much toilet paper, laundry detergent, food, etc. could be purchased?

I also am concerned about money/cash being used the way it "should" be, but - as others have said - if one does due diligence before donating, all one can do is hope that it is used in a meaningful way for the people it was meant for.

And - are we really doing anyone a favor when we are "donating" stuff that is one step away from our trash?

Last edited by bearisgray; 07-01-2019 at 07:28 AM.
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Old 07-01-2019, 08:19 AM
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I would say prayers, help in the way of labor and time then monies, from a one on one interaction.

Years ago during my first marriage my then Mother in Law lost her home due to a fire. Neighbors and co-workers dropped of items like blankets, clothes as well as furnishings. After it was all said and done we carted most off to the landfill it wasn't worth passing on to charity.
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Old 07-01-2019, 08:47 AM
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I don’t worry about money I donate to a reputable relief effort. As in many disasters, items donated just cause problems.
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Old 07-01-2019, 09:57 AM
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Money is the best but only if it does a good. I donate to the local churches in the area. I do not donate money to large relief organizations. Wait until the basic needs are met first before donating things.
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Old 07-01-2019, 10:11 AM
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From what I have seen with hurricanes, large plastic containers and cleaning supplies. Large containers with lids to put items in that want to be saved. Cleaning supplies for floors from flooded houses. Bleach especially.
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Old 07-01-2019, 12:03 PM
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I guess it depends on the type of disaster. Having once been without electricity for 8 days due to a wildfire in our area, the things we did use were, emergency candles and batteries. If you would rather not donate money (which I totally understand) then these simple items are useful.
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Old 07-01-2019, 12:16 PM
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I think baby diapers and infant formula are often overlooked and even food banks don't dispense diapers. Crying babies can interfere with any other task at hand. So I worry most about the babies.
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Old 07-01-2019, 01:23 PM
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Cash and gift cards.
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Old 07-01-2019, 02:00 PM
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I usually give money to the local food bank if it is a wide spread disaster. Otherwise I give the family money and trust they know what to do with it. Sometimes in a crisis, what they want/need to feel better isn't what we might think. My friend's house was flooded in the Great Flood of 2016 in Baton Rouge. She has lived in her house for about 30 years and never even got close to flooding. Her house was the last one on the block to flood. After things settled down I sent her money and said to use it for something she needed, whether a haircut, mani/pedi, something for the house, etc. She called to say it was very much appreciated and she was going to get a massage, otherwise unaffordable.
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Old 07-01-2019, 11:35 PM
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We had a local family lose all of their possessions in a house fire. They were devastated. There was an outpouring of love from the community. They were asked, "What do you need the most?" They said beds, linens, children toys...just everything. There was a staging area in a local warehouse. Donors were told to only send, new or "like" new items. We donated a never used trundle bed for the kids. My sister donated brand new bed linens and I had the idea to go with the bed theme and give them a queen size quilt I just got back from the long-armer. The family stayed with relatives for 9 months. The donations languished in the warehouse. The family was waiting for the insurance to finally settle with them. Once they got the insurance settlement, half of the donations went to Salvation Army and the other half went to the dump. So what is the right answer of how to respond to a disaster?

Last edited by Crispy_Frog; 07-01-2019 at 11:41 PM.
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