From the Republican:
Disaster Relief Fund
The United Way of Pioneer Valley has established a disaster relief fund with an initial grant of $25,000 in response to the tornado devastation. United Way Board Chair, Kevin C. Maynard and President & CEO, Dora D. Robinson are encouraging other fundraising efforts to partner with United Way in support of these relief efforts.
To make donations to the Tornado Relief Fund, go to www.uwpv.org and click on the donate button, or mail your check made payable to United Way of Pioneer Valley, 184 Mill Street, Springfield, MA 01108. For more information, call the United Way 413-693-0227.
All funds will be used to support the programs administered by local Red Cross chapters throughout Hampden County.
Donations can also be made directly to The Red Cross, a gift that enables the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. Visit www.redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. Contributions may also be sent to the American Red Cross Pioneer Valley Chapter at 506 Cottage St., Springfield, MA 01104 or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, DC 20013
Connecting with Emergency Resources
Residents of the communities affected by yesterday’s devastating tornadoes are urged to use United Way’s MASS2-1-1 referral service which connects callers to information about critical health and human services available in their community.
According to Paul Mina, executive director of MASS2-1-1, staffing of the referral service has been increased in response to the tornadoes.
Locating Displaced Residents
The Red Cross Safe and Well website is being used to track residents who have been displaced by yesterday’s tornadoes in the Springfield area.
It is a free, public communication tool where those affected by disasters can register on the site and post messages that they are safe. Loved ones can then conduct a search on the site to view the posted messages.
To access the website, please go to www.redcross.org/safeandwell. You can enter yourself as “Safe and Well” if you were impacted by the storm, or search for a loved one you cannot locate.
People who do not have access to a computer and the internet, can call the City’s 3-1-1 Call Center which can assist you with entering yourself into the system or searching for a loved one. The number into the 3-1-1 Center is 413-736-3111.
Registration computers will be made available at shelter locations within the City of Springfield for residents located at those sites. Please be patient as the database will take time to fill up. If you do not see a loved one listed when you search initially, please check back later.