Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Update: Hurricane Sandy Relief Efforts

Our thoughts and prayers are with our Girl Scout sisters, their families and others affected by the destruction Hurricane Sandy left behind.  More than a dozen Girl Scout councils were affected, including GSCSNJ.  Although we have Girl Scout sisters who are still without power, food or water, or have been displaced from their homes, we are resilient and will bounce back from this experience with the help of our sister Girl Scouts.

Many of our Girl Scout members are in need or require assistance. If you or the volunteers in your Service Unit need help, please tell us directly how we can help meet your needs.  You can start the conversation by sending us a message on Facebook.

To provide immediate relief GSCSNJ has turned all three Girl Scout Service Centers into “Comfort Stations” during normal business hours.  We are providing drinking water, hot coffee, hot chocolate and power strips for recharging devices free of charge.  Cases of bottled water and firewood are also available for members and will be distributed on a first come first serve basis.

While researching the needs of the communities in our area we received an email from the Middlesex County Regional Chamber of Commerce listing several local organizations that are accepting donations of nonperishable food, toiletries, paper goods, diapers and baby wipes. We encourage you to reach out to them directly:

Sayreville is accepting donations at Our Lady of Victories Parish - Dalton Hall, 24 Main St., Sayreville from Noon - 8 PM and the Gilette Complex, 287 Cheesequake Rd. Suites K & L, 9AM - 5PM.
Jamesburg Food pantry is in desperate need for food and water.  Presbyterian Church of Jamesburg 175 Gatzmer Ave. Contact 732-521-1711

The South River Food Bank at 9 Jeffery Ave., South River (the old one is flooded) needs non-perishable food and toiletries for 200 people.  Contact Debbie 732-257-1999
The State PBA is collecting donations to bring to first responders at the shore on Saturday.  Bring donations to the Edison Municipality office 100 Municipal Boulevard, Edison, NJ 08817 Contact Chris 732-754-5476.

·         Canned goods (non-perishable), Boxed cereals, cookies, etc.
·         Soap
·         Water
·         Kids/Baby Clothing
·         Shampoo
·         Toilet Paper/Toothbrushes/Toothpaste, etc.
·         Batteries/Flashlights
·         Socks/Underwear (men's and women's)
·         Sweatshirts/Pants/Thermals
·         Linens/Blankets
·         Razors/ Shaving Cream
·         Diapers (Baby and Adult)

While Girl Scouts does not allow fundraising on behalf of outside organizations, we recognize that sending funds may be the quickest and most effective way to lend a hand during this difficult time.  Go to www.redcross.org and click on “ways to help”.  Visit GSUSA’s blog for other ideas about how you can help: http://blog.girlscouts.org/2012/11/hurricane-sandy-how-can-you-help.html

You can also work with the State of New Jersey volunteer emergency hot line at 1-800-Jersey7. The state is working to place volunteers where needed. You can also e-mail rowena.madden@sos.state.nj.us to get connected to a volunteer opportunity or find out where you can donate items near you.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that federal disaster aid has been made available to the State of New JerseyPlease call FEMA’s Helpline Number: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).

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