PRESS RELEASE: Operation USA to Aid Recovery Efforts Following Hurricane Florence
Los Angeles-based non-governmental agency seeking donations as massive storm makes landfall
Los Angeles, Calif., September 13, 2017—Operation USA, a Los Angeles-based international relief agency, today announced plans to assess damage and deliver aid to community-based partners in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. The agency will deliver both in-kind recovery aid—relief materials, cleanup supplies, and medical and hospital equipment—and financial assistance as needed to affected communities in the southeastern United States.
Hurricane Florence—which many experts are calling “the storm of a lifetime”—is expected to make landfall early Friday as a Category 2 or 3 storm, and then stall over North and South Carolina, slamming the states with catastrophic winds and record rainfall. Florence’s storm surge is expected to reach 13 feet, causing widespread flooding. As of Thursday afternoon, many communities in Florence’s path were already experiencing winds upward of 75 mph and heavy rain. Communities in Virginia, West Virginia, Georgia, Tennessee, Maryland and Pennsylvania are also at risk as the storm moves onshore.
Preparations for Florence included the mandatory evacuation of more than one million people from island and coastal communities. As gas stations, grocery stores and other businesses closed down, local officials warned anyone choosing to shelter in place that emergency services may not be available until Hurricane Florence leaves the area. Most area residents have not experienced a hurricane of this strength for decades, if ever.
“A storm of this magnitude is likely to cause extensive damage,” said Richard Walden, CEO, Operation USA. “We are well versed in post-hurricane response and flood recovery, and will preemptively prepare aid in order to deliver relief quickly and efficiently to where it’s needed most. Donations at this time are crucial to our response.”
Operation USA is calling on both the public and corporate partners to support response and recovery efforts with monetary donations and bulk material aid. Now in its 40th year, the organization is well prepared to assist relief efforts with in-kind supplies and to aid long-term recovery with cash grants and recovery programs, and will work closely with community-based partners to support rebuilding and resiliency-building efforts in Florence’s wake.
HOW TO HELP:
Donations to Operation USA will be allocated directly to Hurricane Florence relief and recovery efforts.
Donate online at give.opusa.org
, by phone at 323-413-2353, or by check made out to Operation USA, PO BOX 36188, Los Angeles, CA 90036-0188. Donations can also be made via text message: text AID to 50555 to donate $10. Text donations are collected for the benefit of Operation USA by the mGive Foundation and subject to the terms found at www.mGive.org/t.
Corporate donations supporting recovery and rebuilding efforts — bulk quantities of disaster-appropriate supplies, transportation and shipping services, shelter, power generation, water purification and medical supplies — are also being requested.
United Airlines miles can be donated to Operation USA through United Airlines Charity Miles program at www.united.com.
About OPERATION USA:
Founded in 1979, Operation USA supports health and education programs in order to help children and families at home and abroad recover from disasters. Focusing on under-served and overlooked communities, and working with partners around the world, OpUSA empowers communities to recover, build resiliency and thrive. Learn more at www.opusa.org.
Richard Walden, President and CEO of Operation USA, is available as an expert source on disaster recovery.