It’s time to lend a hand

Those groups responding to Hurricane Harvey need your help

An elderly woman is carried to dry ground as she evacuates a neighborhood in west Houston inundated by floodwaters after water was released from nearby Addicks Reservoir when it reached capacity due to Tropical Storm Harvey on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, in Houston, Texas. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

An elderly woman is carried to dry ground as she evacuates a neighborhood in west Houston inundated by floodwaters after water was released from nearby Addicks Reservoir when it reached capacity due to Tropical Storm Harvey on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, in Houston, Texas. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

The American Red Cross is helping the people affected by Hurricane Harvey in Texas and all across the Gulf coast. A number of Iowa Red Cross volunteers already have joined in this crucial undertaking and more will certainly be headed south before long.

Shelters are open all across Texas. Supplies are streaming in and are being distributed. The Red Cross is just one part of what is already a massive humanitarian response to a natural disaster that has few parallels in our history. Just about every charitable organization is coming forward to lend a hand in addressing the immediate crisis. The Salvation Army, Feeding Texas and countless other groups are mobilizing to do what they can to help address the immediate and long-term needs of the victims of this sobering event.

Watching the distressing news coverage about the suffering this storm has brought about makes most of us want to help. Unless one is already a part of an organized relief group, the best way to help is to provide financial support to the Red Cross or one of the other established charities.

The Times-Republican urges its readers to do just that. All the major groups that are lending assistance have websites through which donations can be made.

Given the massive destruction this storm is producing, the recovery will be long and difficult. It is likely that all the major charities will find their resources depleted as they struggle to meet almost unprecedented needs. Americans will need to stand ready to provide help not just in the next few days but for at least many months hence.

How you can help

Those wanting to aid in disaster relief, may send donations to the Red Cross at: www.redcross.org, or text HARVEY to 90999; the Salvation Army at: helpsalvationarmy.org or call 1-800-SAL-ARMY. Donations can also be made to Feeding Texas, a network of the state’s food banks: www.feedingtexas.org