A group of local residents are reaching out to support victims of the latest super storm that left a trail of destruction along the northeast coast of the United States.
Jimmy Gould, president of the Parents Who Care – Project Graduation 2013, announced the joint effort project the day after the massive storm moved its way inland through the southern coast of New Jersey, impacting millions from Maine to the Carolinas in its path. Gould said they are asking the public to make a donation, whether monetary or nonperishable goods, that will be sent to the battered towns next week.
The first way to donate is to take items to the central drop off location at Airline High School. Gould hopes they are able to fill the donated Tango Transport trailer, from back to front and top to bottom.
There will also be donation drop offs set up at the C.E. Byrd and Airline football game this Friday, Nov. 2. Donations at the Tango trailer will be accepted now through next Wednesday, Nov. 7.
“You don't have to have a student at Airline High School to be part of this,” Gould said. “We are going to have someone at the trailer 12 to 18 hours a day so people can pull in off Airline Drive and make a donation. This is a community effort.”
Gould said they are looking for donations of bottled water, personal hygiene products, juices, canned foods, diapers, baby wipes, canned formula, any nonperishable items and cleaning supplies.
“Anything along those lines are things that will be needed,” he said.
Gould said they will load the truck Thursday morning and depart for the east coast upon completion.
Another fundraiser will be held on Saturday, Nov. 3, from 12 p.m. until 12 a.m. at the Dixie Corn Maze. Those who bring donated items will receive a discount on the admission price.
On Sunday, Nov. 4, local church organizations will be selling jambalaya plates for $8 at Airline High School from 12 p.m. until 6 p.m.
Gould said they hope to organize more fundraisers and donation drives in the near future.
“Our events have only just begun,” Gould said.
Accounts have also been set up at Community Trust Bank and Citizens National Bank for those wishing to make monetary donations to Project Sandy.
The hurricane relief effort is supported by Project Graduation, a group of parents who care all over the country that find safe havens for seniors on graduation day to meet so there are no fatalities or harm to anyone that night. The effort originally began in Maine, Gould said, in the late 1980s when a group of high schoolers were killed in an automobile accident, and Project Sandy. However, Airline senior and student body president Taylor Veillon said this effort goes beyond their graduating class.
“Airline is an entire community that has a big, giving heart,” she said. “We understand that some [victims] are students just like us with families just like ours. We really need to reach out to those people and give all that we can.”