The past month has been a challenging time for the world around us. Both Hurricane Harvey and Irma have caused excessive damage and brought despair to a lot of people. It is estimated that Hurricane Harvey has taken the lives of at least 70 people, and Irma has killed at least 55.
The wake of the storm has left millions without power and destroyed countless homes. There is no doubt that Florida, Texas and the other areas around the world that have been affected need volunteers. Florida Governor Rick Scott recently requested the help of 17,000 volunteers via The Red Cross.
Volunteers are filling many key roles in the hurricane relief effort including fundraising, search and rescue, running emergency shelters, providing food and water, and other immediate support to victims.
The disaster has brought many people together in an act of true volunteerism to assist those affected by the catastrophe. Many celebrities and influencers are also getting involved with the relief effort.
Houston Texans defensive end JJ Watt raised over 27 million dollars in fundraising efforts to support hurricane Harvey relief efforts in Texas. JJ’s campaign set the record for the largest charitable fundraiser in the history of crowdfunding.
Organizations around the world are also getting involved. Apple donated 10 million to Harvey and Irma relief. Apple is just one of many organizations making contributions.
People are stepping up to the volunteer calling all around the world. The hurricane, the people in need, and the individuals making a difference have taught us a lot about the power of volunteerism. Here are a few things we have learned.
Volunteers come from all different backgrounds
People from all different backgrounds and ethnicities are coming together to support Hurricane Harvey and Irma victims. Sometimes we often forget how important it is for us all to come together in times of need. There is no greater feeling than helping another person and providing support. There have been countless stories the last few weeks of heroic men and women dropping everything they are doing to go help and support the hurricane relief efforts. Providing support to those involved in this catastrophic event can be done by everyone. There are many ways that we can all get involved in lending a hand. We will discuss a few of these ways later on in the post.
Volunteers share one common overall goal
Volunteers may have many roles and be involved in a lot of different components of the relief effort. That being said they all share one common goal. The overall goal is providing selfless care to individuals who have been affected. It has been truly amazing to see hundreds of nonprofit organizations, with different missions, come together in an effort to provide care for those who need it the most. At Volunteerhub we are humbled to have the opportunity to work with these types of organizations every day.
The World Needs More Volunteers
The current events with Harvey and Irma have shown just how important volunteers are. Truth is, there are many other people around the world that need our support, and many nonprofits that are looking to fill a need. Less than 25% of people in the United States volunteer. Imagine how much more good we could do if we raise that percent by even just a few percentage points. Think about all the lives we could change.
There are a lot of ways to get involved
If you are looking for ways that you can get involved in the hurricane relief efforts here are just a few:
- Commit to helping with the rebuilding efforts
- Volunteer your time in the cities that need assistance
- Donate to a reputable nonprofit or crowdfunding campaign raising money for the cause
- Donate supplies needed to the relief effort
- Find opportunities locally to help
- Identify organizations to assist (Here is a list of a few: http://nbcnews.to/2vYyICQ)
Both Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma have caused a lot of damage to the people and the communities affected. We all have the unique opportunity of making a difference in the lives of those affected by a tragedy. Becoming a volunteer and helping out in your community and around the world can provide you more value than any amount of money can bring. Become a volunteer today and let’s raise the 25% statistic together.