Dublin Villager

Hurricane Sandy relief effort

Schools and local groups are pitching in

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Hurricane Sandy relief efforts are coming to Dublin.

Stephanie Reed is working with local groups and the Dublin City School District to collect enough emergency items to fill a trailer that will head to New York and New Jersey this weekend.

The Dublin resident has been talking to a friend living in New York City since the hurricane blew through the northeast late last month, causing flooding, blackouts and deaths.

"I've been in touch with a friend in New York City over the past couple weeks who got called in to help a community in Queens, Rockaway and Far Rockaway," she said. "It's on a small peninsula on the very edge of Queens and was completely exposed to Sandy and was ravaged."

The Red Cross was due in the town Nov. 11, but Reed wasn't sure if relief has made it into the area yet.

A local councilman is asking people to order supplies on Drugstore.com or amazon.com and send them to his office for dispersal among the residents.

"They need diapers, wipes, tampons -- basic, basic needs in addition to food items," Reed said. "They're just trying to keep people alive while they're waiting on electricity and help."

Reed decided to take her effort public and enlisted the help of a friend with a 22-foot-long tailer.

"I want to take it stocked full," she said.

When Reed contacted Dublin City Schools for help, she was connected with a Grizzell Middle School PTO member who was also collecting items to help people in New Jersey.

Some Dublin schools will act as collection areas throughout the week during school hours; these include Coffman and Jerome high schools, Davis and Karrer middle schools and Riverside, Chapman and Thomas elementary schools.

From 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, and from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16, the trailer will be at Kroger, 299 W. Bridge St., to collect items from the community.

"There's more we can do here in Dublin," Reed said.

Items needed for relief efforts include heavy winter coats, winter socks, long underwear, hats, gloves, warm scarves, new underwear, hand and foot warmers, flashlights, candles, battery-powered lanterns, toilet paper, paper towels, aspirin, Advil, ibuprofen, cough medicine, lip balm, vasoline, children's cold medicines, diapers of all sizes, wipes, pull-ups, baby formula, Desitin, adult diapers, tampons, pads, Ensure-type drink meal replacements, meal-replacement bars, contractor trash bags, pet food, large duffel bags and AA, C, D and 9v batteries. Toiletry packets of deodorant, toothbrushes, toothpaste, lotion and other items are also needed.

"We really need specific items," Reed said.

Plastic storage tubs are also needed to help organize the trailer. When it leaves late Friday, Reed said it will stop in New York and then head to New Jersey.

"We leave Friday evening and arrive in the Rockaways Saturday to deliver stuff to the community," she said. "We'll split the load down the middle and go onto another very similar community in New Jersey called Highlands."

Along with donations, students from a few Dublin City Schools will also make cards for hurricane victims. Residents can donate notes and cards of encouragement.

"We're asking kids at a couple schools to make cards for people to put in ration bags," she said.

"It has meant the world to these people. They feel like everyone has forgotten about them," Reed said. "People are still dying. There are elderly and the disabled that can't get down the steps to get rations."

For more information on the collection, find the group's Facebook page at Dublin Hurricane Sandy Project.

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