Over the last two days, Harvey has swamped the Gulf Coast of Texas with nearly two feet of rain, and it doesn't show signs of stopping. Exact numbers aren't known, but tens of thousands could be without housing for weeks or months as recovery efforts continue. If you want to donate to flood victims affected by Hurricane Harvey, there are several organizations that are working directly on relief efforts, and they make it really easy to put your monetary aid in the right hands.
Due to the widespread destruction, the Gulf Coast region is going to need lots of help from across the country, so get ready to whip out that credit card. If you live in Texas and are eligible, consider donating blood. The Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center in Houston has suspended collections due to the storm, but the South Texas Blood and Tissue Center has locations in San Antonio and Victoria that will take donations. You can also donate financially online to either organization — both work in areas that are heavily affected by Harvey right now.
The Houston area also has a significant homeless population that is going to need special care as the city recovers. The George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston has been turned into a shelter, and Houstonians are encouraged to donate clothing, food, and linens if they can make it there safely. In addition, Star of Hope is a local Houston charity that's taking in homeless Houstonians — you can donate online or send some of the organization's most needed items, but only do that if you can safely deliver the supplies in person since mail service may be unreliable right now.
Lastly, with the back to school season ongoing, now is the perfect time organize some Harvey relief efforts in your local community. Here's a collection of fundraising ideas that you can mine —some of them are pretty involved, but be sure to strike a balance between profitable and timely because Harvey victims need your support as soon as possible.
The damage inflicted by Hurricane Harvey is too widespread and severe for Texas to handle it all by itself, and the state shouldn't have to. Everyone should step up to help the Gulf Coast region recover from this disaster, because this storm shouldn't have happened in vain. Harvey is a chance for the nation to come together and help each other, so let's make it happen.