Elon coordinating Hurricane Harvey relief opportunities
The university is planning multiple efforts for students, faculty and staff to assist the Texas communities imacted by the hurricane that struck the state this fall.
Elon is coordinating opportunities for faculty and staff members to support communities impacted by the recent hurricanes.
Hurricane Harvey Response
The Kernodle Center is working with Jodean Schmiederer, dean of student development, and Jessica Gisclair, associate professor and chair of the Department of Communications, to organize a team of Elon staff and faculty volunteers to travel to the Houston area over January break. The group will work with Community Collaborations International, an organization that coordinates volunteer support in the aftermath of natural disasters.
The staff and faculty group, led by Schmiederer and Gisclair, will depart on Tuesday, Jan. 23 and return on Sunday, Jan. 28. The cost to participate is $600, which covers expenses for transportation, lodging and meals. Staff members who sign-up are able to utilize their 16 hours of allocated volunteer leave time. This is a significant expense to participate. If you are not able to participate but would like to offer financial support to your colleagues that sign-up, contact Kyle Anderson, assistant director of student community engagement programs, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are interested in signing up to participate, contact Anderson at email@example.com by Wednesday, Dec. 20 for additional information.
The Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement is also offering a student-led Spring Alternative Break Program to Houston. If faculty and staff members know any students who may be interested in participating, direct them to the Kernodle Center website for more information: https://www.elon.edu/u/service-learning/current-students/alternative-breaks-program/.
Hurricane Maria Response
Elon continues to monitor the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. At this time, untrained volunteers are still not encouraged to travel to Puerto Rico due to infrastructure challenges. Trained volunteers coordinated through disaster response organizations are still working diligently to help restore power and basic services. At the present time, monetary donations are most helpful.
Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, an association of organizations that mitigate and alleviate the impact of disasters, provides a list of agencies involved in relief and recovery efforts, including donation links for those groups, available here: https://www.nvoad.org/voad-members/national-members/. Be aware of fraud and scams related to disaster relief efforts. The best way to donate is to visit an organization's website directly.
Other Continued Disaster Response Efforts
Elon continues to have a presence in communities impacted by previous storms. The Kernodle Center has coordinated a Spring Alternative Break Program to New Orleans since 2005 to offer ongoing support to help rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Katrina. During the 2018 break, work will continue through a sustained partnership with the organization Youth Rebuilding New Orleans.