By: StormJunkie , 8:35 PM GMT on August 03, 2008
Because at some point the little guys and gals are going to have to take over and start making smart, real time, fiscally responsible decisions. Not only in relief efforts, but in all other aspects of our economy and government as well.
WUBA Hurricane Ike Relief Effort
Ike Relief Update 10-6-08
Afternoon all, the push to continue to keep supplies rolling to the Gulf Coast continues. This morning we shipped out three sets of packages with medical supplies and some cleaning supplies. The first set of two boxes went to the Bridge City Fire Department. It contained burn kits, bandages, first aid kits, Neosoprin, an air splint and more. The second set of boxes went to Eagle Heights Fellowship in Baytown. This is a shelter being run by a local pastor and seems to be one of the few shelters in this area that will remain open for the next four to six weeks. The supplies in these three boxes included CPR kits, first aid kits, disinfectant wipes, gloves, and more. The third set of three boxes were shipped to EmmyRose which she will personally deliver to the San Leon/Baycliff area. They included many of the same items listed above. We have estimated the value of these seven boxes to be between $4000 and $5000 which we shipped for just under $350.
We are also continuing to work with several corporations in order to procure donated goods which have been specifically requested by Chambers, Harris, and Orange Counties. Will continue to update on those efforts after we have solid commitments from each. Over 5,000 square feet of warehouse space has also been donated to us in Atlanta; which will serve as a centrally located distribution point. This will allow us to have corporate donated goods sent to a central location from which they can then be kitted and transported to various distribution points and shelters. A trucker and truck which will pick up and deliver goods for the cost of fuel. With all of this going on we are also entering the next phase of or our push to make Portlight a sustainable entity that will be able to facilitate the needs of the under served, unserved, and forgotten people for years to come. In order to help support this mindset we are beginning a monthly donor program. There will be more on this in the next few days as well as progress on getting supplies in hands; please consider what you may be able to give on a monthly basis. Thanks!
More supplies on the way...
We have now sent four trucks to several areas in Texas including Bridge City, Winnie, and Anahauc. The supplies that have already been delivered include food, drinks, and many other necessities. We have also delivered supplies to the disabilities community in Houston and League City. Thanks to presslord, Rainman32, Nlimbo, Pat, and Icepilot for following through on the deliveries of supplies. Also a big thanks to FLDART1 and Will for providing myself and presslord's wife with an essential escort that allowed us to gain access to normally un-accessible areas as well as putting us in contact with the correct people in the correct communities. Thanks to Emmy and code for the accommodations and food which also helped us conserve travel expenses.
Now a little about my personal experience from being in the area. Many of you may have seen the picture I posted of the Bridge City FD crew looking at my laptop and using my air card. If you have not seen it I suggest you view it and read the caption. Needless to say, this was one of the more emotional experiences of the journey for me. Some of the other things that really spoke to me were the folks in Bridge City talk about how they felt "forgotten" compared to the Houston/Galveston area. Chambers County now has a central distribution center that is delivering supplies to the local distribution centers in Anahuac, Winnie, Oak Island, and soon High Island. Along with working with the Bridge City distribution center we will also be working to get supplies to the centralized distribution center in Chambers County.
Portlight is currently working on meeting some of the needs that were gained through all of our efforts; but we are also working to make sure we get these supplies to the area in the most efficient area. That said, driving truck halfway across the country is not the most effective means to do this. By working with freight lines and utilizing delivery options from the likes of Lowes, Walmart, and other companies we intend to find the most efficient way to meet the needs of the impacted areas. Ensuring that we operate efficiently is critical to making a dollar go as far as it can. At this point we have raised just over $25,000 and we have spent just over $13,000 getting the first four trucks in to the area. These four trucks have delivered between $150,000 and $200,000 worth of supplies. The intent is to continue to pursue and implement this kind of cost effectiveness in all of our efforts.
We are currently working to get more supplies tot he area and will continue to do this as long as the funding is there. We also hope to pursue a toy drive for the kids at Christmas time, but we will update more on this later as we are concentrating on the immediate needs right now.
Thank you all for the support, and more importantly then any one of us, the folks of Texas send their heart felt thanks. Please continue to contribute as you can and also know that we are working on a monthly donor plan in order to continue to provide relief and support to the "forgotten people".
As most of you know, several WU members are currently working to assist the folks that have been impacted by Hurricane Ike. The goal of this project are to provide assistance and supplies to the folks that are off the beaten path that often do not get the same relief as the mainstream areas. There are many ways to donate and help the folks in Tx and La, and however you feel is appropriate; please help out. If not through this effort, then through many of the others.
Presslord has been kind enough to use a charity that he has run for over 10 years as the face of this effort. The name of the organization is Portlight Strategies, Inc. You can currently donate by check and PayPal. If you send checks, the faster they can get to Portlight the better as we plan to be on the road by the end of the week. All checks should be made payable to:
Portlight Strategies, Inc.
2043 Maybank Hwy.
Charleston, SC 29412
MEMO: Hurricane Ike Relief
Or donate through PayPal.
Portlight has sole access and responsibility for all funds.
Portlight Stratagies will be in charge of all funds, and make sure that the supplies and monies get in the hands of those that need it most. They are also working with several entities in South Carolina to raise additional funds.
Here is more on this organization
Portlight Strategies, Inc., a 501c3 nonprofit tax exempt organization founded in 1997 for the purpose of providing medical equipment and other services primarily to people with disabilities. This was also the host organization for the Spirit of ADA Torch relay which visited 24 cities in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. All funds will be transparently accounted for in a separate dedicated account and posted on Pat's blog and are a matter of public record through the organizations IRS Form 990 which can be reviewed at Charity Navigator or the IRS. For the last 6 years over 90% of all donated funds to this group have gone to direct program services. This can be verified at the South Carolina Secretary of State website: www.scsos.com...click Public Charities and then charity search....enter Portlight
This arrangement serves several purposes:
-all contributions will be tax deductible as allowed by federal law
-all accounting is public record
-No one will have a personal tax liability on the funds
-checks and balances on accountability for all monies received...
-affiliation with a national nonprofit with a proven track record of credibility
Thanks, and please remember it does not matter how you choose to help as long as you help in some fashion.
Truck 1 with medical equipment for the disabilities community and specifically Emmy!
Truck 2 has been delivered to Bridge City and Winnie; truck three plans under way now! Can't really figure out why anyone would want to see PRESS IN A DRESS; but if it gets the third truck to these areas on time, then I don't care why!!!
Pics from truck 2
The ladies of the Charleston Disabilities Resource Center and the best of the best of the Live 5 News Crew! Thanks to both for their assistance!
presslord! What an outstanding gen....ummm...man!
These picture don't even really do justice to what all is on the truck, as well as the things you can; see we have...
Over a hundred bottles of Bug spray
Palmer's Butter Bottom
LED Flash Lights
Dog & Cat Food
and I am sure there is some other stuff I have forgotten
With a little help, StormJunkie.com is pleased to announce the advent of 3d-LIIVID™ radar. This product utilizes Level II WSR-88D radar data to produce three dimensional views of storms. Please stop by and check out a 3d-LIIVID isosurface loop from Dolly making landfall. A look through the user manual and the FAQ will give you a better understanding of what 3d-LIIVID is, and how it works. We have also just added several new overlays including a 45dbz isosurface, county lines, and US highways.
The current free six frame loop is from the KBYX Key West radar station.
As always, we really look forward to hearing everyone's feedback as it will help us to continue to improve 3d-LIIVID.
The beginning of the help video index can now be found on StormJunkie.com. Currently there are series on The spaghetti models, the FSU Experimental Forecast page, and the QuickSCAT page. Look for more video series in the near future as well as some other neat additions to the site coming soon.
The intent for StormJunkie.com is to provide access to some of the best tropical and weather tracking information on the web. As hobbyists we truly appreciate the value of the wealth of information available on the internet. We are still in the process of learning how to read and interpret the wealth of maps and data available. That said; part of the learning process is to find the many sites out there, learn to navigate them, and then get a basic understanding of the information provided. Hopefully this site can help speed that process up. In conjunction with wanting fast easy access to these links from any computer, the site was also designed to foster a learning environment. Links and information on models, marine data, wind data, imagery, weather learning, and much more can be found here. Make sure you check out the Wilma videos provided by weatherboyfsu and CyberWolf.
I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to all of the folks that have used the site, helped with the site, or offered suggestions. That said, this site is meant to be useful to all. If there is anything that you feel is missing or could be improved upon, please let me know!
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