Clear Channel/Springfield Organizes Help For Joplin
May 27, 2011 at 11:44 AM (PT)
The CLEAR CHANNEL/SPRINGFIELD, MO cluster is the latest radio group to organize efforts to help the victims of the devistating JOPLIN tornado. OM PAUL KELLEY said the stations are serving as a hub to help organizations, businesses and residents collect and distribute resources to those who need them most.
"Although the tornadoes hit on SUNDAY night, it wasn’t until MONDAY when we truly began to understand what happened, so it was something we put together on the fly,: KELLEY told ALL ACCESS. We had to figure out what we can we do, what needs to happen now and most importantly, not interfere with the search-and-rescue efforts going on. We weren’t going to go down to JOPLIN and get in the way; we just wanted to make sure we went in prepared to distribute goods and supplies. So we reached out to two officially sanctioned local organizations.
"One was the OZARKS FOOD HARVEST. There were thousands of homes that were either destroyed or without electricity; plus there were hundreds of rescue workers who also needed to be fed. In conjunction with FOOD HARVEST, we immediately began to fill a truck with non-perishable, easy-open food items, bottled water and wet wipes -- things can immediately eat and clean themselves up . The initial goal was to fill one truck in the course of a day, but we ended up filling six trucks in two days. The response was so overwhelming, we weren’t even soliciting cash still, but we still had $6,000 dropped off in $10 and $20 increments."
The other group was CONVOY OF HOPE, to make it easier for people to give," he continued. "It's hard for some people to rearrange their day so they have to drive to one location to buy groceries, then go to a another location where the truck is. We made is easy for them to go online and text donations; within 24 hours raised $20,000 in cash."
"We want to do be very sensitive to provide what’s needed," KELLEY Noted. "We don’t want to continue to fill up trucks and send things out when they’re not needed, Just yesterday FEMA yesterday said, 'Please do not send unsolicited or unsanctioned donations; don’t just fill up a truck and send it off."
Regarding how long their efforts will go on, KELLEY concluded, "As long as the need is there, our communities will continue to respond. We want to make sure our neighbors get hell because when we need help, we know our neighbors will be there to help us."