Tropical Storm Irene, the subsequent flooding and a rare and devastating tornado in Montgomery County have caused widespread destruction throughout the greater Capital Region. United Way is working with emergency management officials, emergency response agencies, nonprofit and business partners and others to assist with the response effort. Scroll down to see what United Way is doing to help right now.
Please use the links below to help yourself, your family and your community:
Make a Financial Donation
Donate any amount online now by clicking here to United Way of the Greater Capital Region and ensure that your community has the financial support it needs to rebuild and recover for the long term. Gifts made through Friday, September 16 will be used to aid the individuals and families who have been most severely affected by the storm's impact.
You can also Text-to-Give. Simply text IRENE to 80888. Messaging and data rates may apply.
Call United Way 2-1-1 or visit us online by clicking here (new resources added regularly!). It's a free call - just dial 211 from any phone! United Way 2-1-1 call specialists have information on shelter sites and how to access disaster aid. For the duration of storm cleanup and recovery, United Way 2-1-1 operations have been extended to 9:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m., with limited weekend hours.
See how United Way 2-1-1 is helping. View video clips of the 2-1-1 Call Center in operation after Irene.
United Way is mobilizing volunteers in coordination with many local organizations as part of long-term recovery efforts. Recovery will take months, if not longer, so we will continues to need volunteers well into the future. If you are interested in volunteering, please send an e-mail to Molly Miccio by clicking here to provide your information and interests. As we work with our partners to assign volunteers to clean-up and recovery operations, we ask that you are patient as we coordinate with local partners to determine volunteer efforts.
Thanks to our partners in Project Hope (through which nonperishable goods were collected through September 25), we were able to collect supplies for many, many local people and families who were affected by these recent disasters. Special thanks to all those who donated.
Connect with United Way Greater Capital Region for updates and ways to help:
As soon as the storm passed, we at United Way of the Greater Capital Region began working to assist with recovery efforts. While United Way generally does not play a major role in disaster relief agency, we cannot and will not stand idly by as members of our community suffer. We are dedicated to the long-term health and stability of our communities. We will continue to work in the coming months with our partners at local nonprofit organizations, in government, in the public and private sectors and the committed members of our local communities to help our region recover.
Here is a brief snapshot of what we're doing to help right now:
- UWGCR joined the City Mission of Schenectady, the Daily Gazette, Hannaford Supermarkets and Proctors on Project Hope. We solicited donations of canned food, hygiene supplies, infant supplies, dish and laundry detergent and more at drop-off locations throughout the greater Capital Region (including in our office). These donated goods will be distributed to those affected by the recent disasters to aid individuals and families in their long-term recovery efforts.
- United Way 2-1-1 Northeast Region partnered with 2-1-1 call centers in Los Angeles and San Diego to serve callers 24 hours a day, seven days a week (2-1-1 normally operates Monday–Friday, 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.; as of September 28th, 2-1-1 call center hours are now 9:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m., Monday-Friday, with limited weekend hours). In the weeks after the storm, daily call volume increased almost 300%, primarily from callers seeking disaster aid or those looking to volunteer on relief efforts.
- We raised money for storm relief. Through our fundraising efforts, we have raised enough money to supply clean-up tools for volunteers to use to help affected areas recover. We are still working with our disaster response partners and will invest in long-term relief efforts in the next few months.
- We’ve surveyed our local nonprofit partners to learn how this disaster affected their operations. Fortunately, most organizations sustained little to no permanent damage to their facilities. Some organizations, particularly those in Schoharie County and along the Mohawk River, experienced extended power outages, damage to facilites and loss of materials—many of which forced temporary delays, rescheduling, relocation or cancellation of services and programs.