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Here’s how you can help the victims of Hurricane Irma

Hurricane Irma, as you may already know, is one of the most powerful hurricanes on record to have ever hit the Caribbean as well as the US recently. Now, after Hurricane Harvey, these are trying times for both Texas and Florida residents.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, our community rose to the occasion and donated both money and supplies to help those in need. We hope that spirit will continue to support needy families and communities in Florida and the Caribbean. Here’s how you can do your part :

You can… donate money

Cash donations are always the best form of help. This ensures that the most necessary goods can be procured locally and helps avoids heavy logistical costs or a bulk of items that could clog the supply chain.

Many of the most well-known organizations have already started collecting donations for Irma, including Unicef and Save the Children, both of which will focus on affected children, Oxfam, which will be working to provide clean water and sanitation, and Salvation Army, which is setting up emergency shelters.

Animal welfare organizations have put out calls too, including the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animalsthe Best Friends Animal Society, and the South Florida Wildlife Center.

GlobalGiving has also set up an Irma Relief Fund, which will help support vetted local organizations.

You can also… volunteer

If you’re an able-bodied person who lives in Florida, you can volunteer at one of the many emergency shelters set up for Irma. You can sign up to volunteer online through Volunteer Florida, a state-run organization, or call 1-800-FL-Help-1

But most importantly… protect yourself against scams !

It is common for scam artists to emerge after big disasters, but sometimes, even well-intentioned organizations might not function in the best way. Before you donate, you can check out the credentials of nonprofits on websites like Charity Navigator or Guidestar, though these might not cover smaller, community-based organizations.

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