Hurricane Irma is almost clear of Florida, which means the response and recovery to the devastation the storm left behind in the state and in the Caribbean will soon be fully underway.
This ProPublica article about giving after a disaster is worth reading in its entirety, but it makes a couple of key points to keep in mind:
- Do your own research before giving to any group.
- Groups with strong local ties to their community can sometimes be the best option.
- You have a right to demand accountability of the groups you give to.
"No one has ever became poor from giving." - Maya Angelou
American Red Cross: Usually the first group people think of when giving after a disaster. It says it is providing shelters for those displaced by Irma, and it has thousands of volunteers on the ground. You can give here. (3/4 stars from Charity Navigator.)
(A series of reports by ProPublica have raised questions as to how Red Cross uses its donations for emergency relief. You can find some of those stories here. Journalist Jonathan Katz also weighed in on the issue in an interview with Vox’s Sean Illing.)
Salvation Army: The Christian charity is emphasizing its intentions to help with long-term recovery. You can give here.
Americares: The nonprofit focused on medicine and health is seeking to provide emergency medical supplies and other basic resources to first responders and others. You can give here. (4/4 stars from Charity Navigator.)
ConPRmetidos: The Puerto Rican organization, focused on public-private partnership, is aiming to raise $150,000 for relief and recovery. You can give here.
Volunteer Florida: The state-based group is accepting volunteers and donations. Learn more here.
United Way of Miami-Dade: One of the major local nonprofits that will be working on Irma recovery. You can give here.
South Florida Wildlife Center: The group is centering its efforts on animals affected by the storm. You can give here.
Brigid’s Crossing Foundation: An animal shelter in Naples, Florida. You can give here.
Photos of Destruction:
Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida CNN.COM
Bonita Springs, Florida CNN.COM
Jacksonville, Florida CNN.COM
Miami Dade County County Fair Expo Center CNN.COM
Water rises in a neighborhood after Hurricane Irma brought floodwaters to Jacksonville, Florida, Monday, Sept. 11, 2017. JOHN RAOUX / AP CBS.COM
People walk past a building where the roof was blown off by Hurricane Irma in Miami. CNN.COM
A family walks through a street littered with fallen branches from Hurricane Irma in Marco Island, Florida. CNN.COM
A car covered by a downed tree sits along a flooded road the morning after Hurricane Irma swept through Naples, Florida. CNN.COM