The West Springfield School Department has created shelter space for West Springfield residents at West Springfield Middle School and Coburn Elementary School. Roughly 150 families total are there. DHCD, HAPHousing and Center for Human Development are currently providing assistance with housing intakes. If anyone has knowledge of available housing units in West Springfield, please contact Jane Banks of Center for Human Development firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, an update from Gerry McCafferty of the Springfield Housing Department on how best to volunteer and provide aide:
In the next weeks there will be a need for volunteer labor to go through neighborhoods hit by tornadoes to assist with clean up of debris, boarding of houses, and other tasks.
The United Way is working with the City to coordinate these volunteer efforts. Please help us get the word out that people should contact the United Way to offer their volunteer efforts. Call the United Way at 737-2691.
Volunteer efforts are expected to begin early next week, after all power lines have been repaired, dangerous structures removed and roads cleared. We do not want volunteers going into impacted neighborhoods until we determine that the areas are safe.
The most immediate funding need is support for the Red Cross, which is providing emergency assistance, including emergency shelter, to people have been displaced. Donate please donate to the Red Cross by going to the local website, https://chapterneighborhood.wufoo.com/forms/central-and-western-massachusetts-online-donation, calling 1-800-RED-CROSS, or sending a check to American Red Cross Pioneer Valley Chapter, 506 Cottage St., Springfield, MA.