Hurricane Harvey and Irma Relief By: Emily Mohs

Two greatly destructive hurricanes left a huge toll on those living in Texas, Florida, and some of the Caribbean Islands. Back to back hurricanes, Harvey and Irma have caused immense damage. According to Michelle Fox at CNCB, both hurricanes have caused around 150 to 200 billion dollars in damage, which is 25% more than Hurricane Katrina did. It is essential for individuals across the United States, to step in and help improve the lives that were affected by these tragic events, because many of them cannot provide for themselves.

Total chaos was brought to the states when Hurricane Irma and Harvey hit. In order to avoid the tragic sight, many residents of these states traveled somewhere safe. This meant more money spent and more disorder between families. Much of the population hit did not know if they were going to have a home to go back to after the hurricanes, let alone any supplies needed for basic living. Hurricane Harvey was the most powerful, destructive hurricane that hit Texas in over 50 years. Many citizens of Texas were not ready for the long-term effects the hurricane would bring. Seton Student, Lilly Witte, describes how Seton contributed to Texas, “When news broke out of the devastation, we knew we wanted to do something to help those living in the Houston area. Seton Helping Saints held a raffle from September 5-September 9 with 4 different prizes to raise money for families affected by Hurricane Harvey.”  In contrast, Hurricane Irma was first categorized as a level four hurricane It proceeded to get stronger as it passed through the Caribbean Islands but when it hit the U.S., it became a tropical storm. Much of the where level four Irma hit is demolished. Between both hurricanes, several victims are now experiencing a kind of debt that they have not seen in their lifetime. That being said, right now is the most important time for other states to get engaged and assist to those who cannot provide for themselves.

People across the United States can get involved in many kinds of basic relief work, no matter what your age, where you live, or how you provide it. Non-victims can donate and provide direct service to local non-profits. Some foundations accepting help include, Matthew 25, The Red Cross Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, GoFundMe, etc. This is one of the best ways to get involved, because you are dealing with the situation hands on. Many people effected are also looking for simple things such as food, water, and clothes. These necessities are just sitting in many of our homes, waiting to be shared with those in need. With the increased amount of catastrophic events that have happened, and are continuing to happen, proves that the United States needs to come together as a whole to support one each other.

Much of the Seton community has gotten involved with relief work. A couple of weeks ago students participated in a fundraiser, where each individual was asked to donate money to those in need. Several students were kind enough to donate, without seeing the end result.  Lilly Witte explains, “We raised $612 from the raffle, and Seton Helping Saints matched the money raised so a total of $1024 was donated to Sisters of Charity in Houston, Texas to help families affected.”  According to Witte, Seton is not currently planning on doing any other fundraisers to help those in need, but she emphasizes “We as a community still need to keep the victims in our thoughts and prayers.” It is important that we as a Seton community continue to realize the impact we are making in these people’s lives by contributing to several kinds of alleviation.

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