Wednesday, May 25, 2011

How Can You Help?

Today I want to talk about how you can help people who are suffering right now.

In light of recent events (tornadoes in the Midwest, and in the South last month), you may be wondering what you can do to help.  There are many charities to choose from when it comes to donating money, but let me make a suggestion: The LDS (Mormon) Church.  It probably seems obvious that I would suggest this, because as you know we are Mormons, and many of you are, too. Most of our Monday motivational thoughts come from Mormon people, too.  However, I'm not just suggesting that you donate to the Church because we are members of it.

The LDS Church has always been my charity of choice because 100% of my donation goes to people in need.  The Church has a huge network of volunteers throughout the world (members like me, and many of you), which makes this possible.  Of course, some people do get paid for their work, but salaries are covered through other various investments that the Church has.  All donations made to the Humanitarian Fund go to those in need.  You can read more about that here, and you can also make your own donation on that website.

Another article that I want to recommend is one that recently appeared in the Washington Post "On Faith" blog, entitled "Where is God (and the Mormon church) in a natural disaster?"  It describes a little bit about the Mormon welfare system and disaster response, and it's written by the head of Public Affairs for the Mormon church.  It's a very interesting read and it's so inspiring to read about all the good things they are doing to help (thanks to generous donations by people worldwide).

It is so scary to see what has happened to our fellow Americans in the Midwest.  It's heartbreaking.

We have been told for years to "be prepared".  I hope that if you are safe in your home tonight, you are thinking about how you can become better prepared.  Where are you lacking?  Do you need water? More food?  Flashlights, candles, medicines, first aid kits?  All of the above?  It's overwhelming to think about, even for me.  Even though I have a food storage blog and share ideas with you each week, I'm certainly lacking in certain areas.  It's hard!  But I think that recent events have lit a fire in me and renewed my motivation a bit.  I hope it's done the same for you, too.  I'm not going to lie - it's difficult to do it all.  It's also expensive, which is probably what's keeping most people back.  And that's why we started this blog in the first place - to motivate people, to get them on track, to help them out step by step, a little at a time.  It's certainly benefited us, and we know it has helped many of you, too.

Finally - we want to hear your stories.  Have you ever been involved in a natural disaster?  Maybe not necessarily this last week, but have you ever?  If so, we'd love to hear your story.  How did you get by?  Did you have enough?  What were you lacking?  What do you wish you had known beforehand?  What did you learn?  A few years ago my sister-in-law shared her "What I wish I'd known" story from when she was in an ice storm (a "must read", by the way!).  We would love to hear your stories and, with your permission, share them right here on our blog.  Abbie and I feel like we say so much here, but I think we can all learn from each other and what better way than to hear each others' stories?  So, if you have a story, please share it!  Email us at safelygatheredin (at) gmail.com.

And again, if you'd like to donate money to Humanitarian Aid, visit the LDS Church's donation page here.  Remember, 100% of your donation goes to victims, so you can feel good about where your money is going.


Susan said...

I learned something from a lady who was a part of Hurricane Katrina that I have taken to heart. She was prepared with her one year supply of food that takes time to cook. But, it was difficult to cook it while she was trying to keep people from stealing from them. She was also trying to get the mud out of her home. She suggested that you have on hand a 2 week supply of quick and easy to prepare meals. Freeze Dried meals, canned goods, crackers (you can add P.B. and Jelly, chili, canned chicken and tuna to crackers), dry cereal, canned fruit, etc.....She also suggested that you have on hand some comfort foods. She had small children who needed something "normal". You can put away "comfort food" in mason jars with the jar sealer attachment using a food saver. I teach a food storage class at church. We are getting ready to seal comfort foods in June at a food storage class. Comfort Food gives you a feeling of "normal" when times are very stressful. A 2 week supply of quick foods and comfort food will go a long way in an emergency situation.

Julie said...

Thanks for this post. It's helped motivate me to get organized again and get our emergency preperation to at least an acceptable level!

Shreela said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shreela said...

Apologies for deleting my previous comment - a case of TMI !

I remember reading about how Mormons and Amish helping after Ike. Not only did they go into mold-contaminated homes to rid homes of mold contaminated items, but they also helped with deceased livestock.

Thank you Mormons and Amish!!

Speaking of preparedness and livestock (and Ike), we tried very hard to be prepared for Ike, yet there's always something unexpected. DH didn't "secure" the rabbit food. The lid to the rabbit food was blown off, the container blew over, flooding all the rabbit food.

Please consider adding livestock feed to preparedness lists, securing in however your local disasters might effect you. Thank you!