Help for the Heart of Dixie

by Rachel on May 3, 2011

With the world focused on the royal wedding and the capture of Osama Bin Laden, the tornadoes that swept Alabama (hit hardest) and several other states aren’t getting too much attention. I understand why these other stories are big news but my heart goes out to people who seem to be getting the “Sorry you picked a busy news week to get hit by a natural disaster!” brush off.

And I’m guilty of it too — I neglected the tornadoes and the victims just like so many others, choosing to write about the royal wedding on Thursday and Friday. It’s embarrassing really.

The good news and bad news is that it’s not too late. They still need help. And your computer and cell phone make it really easy! Here are some ways to use your technology for good and not just Facebook stalking:

  • Instead of texting that guy you really shouldn’t be texting, text the Red Cross (text “REDCROSS” to 90999) to make a $10 donation. (Actually, please do that every time you pull out your phone to text that guy you shouldn’t be texting. Let’s turn bad decisions into good ones, mmmkay?)
  • Instead of buying a Groupon today, donate a little something on online to Samaritan’s Purse. That’s where I donated and it took me approximately 90 seconds to put in my credit card info and send a donation. (Seriously…90 seconds!!) Or donate to the Red Cross online. Surely these people need help more than you need a fro yo voucher for 80 percent off.
  • If you can find a blood drive in your area (I couldn’t, but I haven’t given up yet) you could donate something as valuable as money but that you might have a little extra of right now. Donating blood doesn’t cost you anything — your body will repay you, I promise.
  • Instead of buying a new book for your Kindle from Amazon, buy a Tide Loads of Hope T-shirt. They have moved their efforts into Alabama to offer free laundry services to the storm victims. Normally I’m not a big fan of purchasing merchandise to raise money, but because this shirt says, “Loads of Hope” on the back, I think it will raise awareness more than, say, a pink blender in the month of October.

I don’t have a tie to this cause or anything (although my grandma is from Alabama!); I just firmly believe that people will donate to good causes, that sometimes they just need a reminder. So…consider this yours!

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Erin May 3, 2011 at 9:23 am

Thank you for the great reminder, Rachel. I was in need of it. This is one of the many reasons I love your blog!


2 Katie May 3, 2011 at 9:51 am

Thank you so much for reminding everyone about what is happening here! Tuscaloosa is my hometown, and though I moved to Birmingham last fall, my sister and dozens of my friends are still there. We were there last weekend and it really is like a bomb went off on a main area of town. We can use all of the help and support we can get!


3 Sable May 3, 2011 at 9:57 am

Thank you for this. I’m embarrassed of how I’ve let the tornado victims and tragedies go by the wayside as well. It’s strange we all caused all that hubbub over Japan but not a peep has been said in most of blogland about the tornado victims.


4 Summer May 3, 2011 at 10:55 am



5 Ashley Breton May 3, 2011 at 10:49 am

This was very encouraging Rachel, thanks for reminding me as well as your other readers :)


6 Summer May 3, 2011 at 10:55 am

Thanks for getting the world out, girl! The damage in Alabama is heartbreaking and widespread. Entire towns are GONE. Completely. The road ahead is long, but by coming together, we all make it a little easier to traverse.


7 Stephanie @ LoveLaughterLight May 3, 2011 at 11:34 am

Great post! I’ve heard Samaritan’s Purse mentioned more times than I can count recently and am headed there to make a donation NOW!


8 Liz @ IHeartVegetables May 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Hahaha I like the idea of texting a donation instead of texting that guy you shouldn’t be texting ;)


9 jenna k May 3, 2011 at 3:58 pm

thanks so much for doing this, and especially for mentioning that it’s more than just alabama! all the surrounding states were hit by these storms systems. most of my friends’ cars were totaled due to hail damage (in knoxville), and many people in my hometown in east tennessee don’t have homes anymore. the destruction by these storms is intense and so widespread.


10 Kali May 3, 2011 at 6:35 pm

I usually donate blood regular, but I’m getting a year off – I slept with a bisexual guy in January, and my blood is no longer welcome.:(


11 Rachel's Mom May 3, 2011 at 9:22 pm

Actually, Grandma is from Cullman, which is one of the counties hit hard by tornadoes. :(


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