LCIF Disaster Relief Update
As Lions, we believe that kindness matters. We are guided by our founder, Melvin Jones, who said “you can’t get very far until you start doing something for someone else.” That’s why when disaster strikes, whether it be in Texas, India or anywhere else around the world, we take action.
Hurricane Harvey struck the south and central coast of Texas on Friday, August 25 with 125 mile per hour winds, then lingered onshore for 5 days, gathering moisture from the Gulf of Mexico. Rain, in some areas over 50 inches, laid waste to over 50 counties in Texas, overflowing rivers and levees. To make matters worse, the storm briefly returned to the Gulf of Mexico, regained strength, and made a second landfall near the Texas and Louisiana border. Authorities have used the words “epic” and “catastrophic” to describe the devastation.
By Sunday, August 27th, LCIF approved a major catastrophe grant of US$100,000. We are working closely with Lions leaders in the area of destruction to determine how we can utilize our resources to make the highest possible impact.
Currently, local, State and Federal agencies are conducting search and rescue operations. Many areas are inaccessible. As search and rescue comes to an end, the recovery phase will begin. The recovery phase could last for weeks, months, or even years.
The Hurricane Harvey disaster radius encompasses four districts, 2-A3, 2-S1, 2-S2, 2-S4, with two others on the periphery, 2-S5, 2-X3. The District Governors of the four hardest hit districts have formed a Disaster Committee, which will conduct a needs assessment and coordinate relief efforts as the flood waters recede. They are calling on Lions everywhere to support Lions Clubs International Foundation’s disaster response efforts by making a donation.
Lions who wish to offer their support by providing supplies or volunteering should reach out via firstname.lastname@example.org to coordinate with the local response efforts.
Because we are global, we respond wherever there are people in need. Even as we address this current disaster in the United States, parts of India, Nepal and Bangladesh are being deluged by monsoon rains. In Mumbai alone, over 1,000 people have been reported killed in the floods. In the past 3 months, LCIF has approved twenty emergency grants to South Asia, totaling US$125,000. Lions of India who wish to donate, and have any questions on how to do so, should contact the ISAAME Secretariat office in Mumbai at LionsIndia@lionsclubs.org.
I know you join me in keeping the victims of Hurricane Harvey and flooding in South Asia in your thoughts and prayers.
Chancellor Bob Corlew
Chairman, Lions Clubs International Foundation