As the waters dumped by Hurricane Harvey begin to recede in southern Texas, residents of Dallas are doing all they can to provide supplies and necessities to those whose lives were upended by winds and rain. Volunteers have poured into the central drop-off site at the Trusted World offices in North Dallas. Groups of volunteers unload cars and trucks full of supplies while others sort items into categories for distribution.
Trusted World is built to help bigger relief organizations run more efficiently during disasters. “Organizations like the Red Cross and community centers are able to place orders with Trusted World and then we deliver the donated items after they have been sorted,” said Taylor Grey, Director of Community Relations for Trusted World. As a member of the Dallas Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD), Trusted World was a natural choice to lead the donation collection for Hurricane Harvey relief. Donations collected at Trusted World are being distributed to evacuation centers set up in Dallas with additional donations planned for delivery to the Houston and Beaumont areas.
In her bright orange Trusted World shirt, Georgia Provitt is leading the team of volunteers. Georgia is a local mom who wanted to help hurricane victims, saw the drop-off address on social media, and showed up Monday morning to make a donation. “On Monday there were only a few volunteers, maybe four or five people helping to unload cars,” Georgia said. “After they took my donation, I asked if they needed any more volunteers and I started helping. I’ve been here all day every day since then.” She has spent her time pulling cases of bottled water from trucks, sorting boxes of diapers and clothing in the parking garage turned staging area, and leading other volunteers to do the same. Her husband, Jose, has been taking care of their three young children, and then volunteering for several shifts as well.
“I’ve never volunteered like this before,” admitted Georgia. “I’ll pass out water to the homeless people in my neighborhood, but I’ve never jumped in with both feet like this. But the shelters are filling up and people need help. You don’t have to have money to make a difference – your hands are free.”
One box at a time, people of all ages and backgrounds are working together to bring tangible hope to the devastated communities stretching from Beaumont to Port Aransas to Houston. Grandmothers, police officers, students, and corporate executives have given their time this week to make the donation process possible.
Trusted World will stay open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. each day as long as donations are needed. Volunteers do not need to register; anyone is welcome to lend a hand. If you would like to donate supplies, the most needed items are non-perishable food, infant formula, and pull-up diapers.
Trusted World announced that due to the generous giving of the DFW metroplex and beyond, their collection site has reached capacity. They are redirecting donations to their new warehouse at 3000 West Kingsley Rd, Garland, TX 75041.
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Story and photos by Mary Martin.