Friday, February 02, 2007
How to help
If anyone is looking for a way to lend a hand in Florida, here are some numbers you might try calling:

Lake County
Lake County Emergency Management: 352-343-9442
Red Cross of Lake and Sumter Counties: 352-314-0883
United Way in Lake County: 352-223-2173 or 352-409-1860
Salvation Army of Leesburg: 352-365-2540

Volusia County
Red Cross of Volusia and Flagler counties: 386-226-1400 or toll free: 1-866-245-9180
United Way of Volusia County: 386-253-0563
Salvation Army: 386-236-2020

Other counties
Red Cross of Marion County: 352-622-3457
Red Cross of Citrus and Hernando Counties: 352-564-8455
Catholic Charities: 407-658-1818
Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida: 407-295-1066
Posted By David Beaudry, CNN Line Producer: 5:57 PM ET
  16 Comments
David/AC360:
Thank you AC360 and CNN for providing information and numbers on how to aid or "lend a hand" to those in immediate need like the victims of Florida's tornados.
Posted By Anonymous Sharon D., Indianapolis, IN : 7:40 PM ET
Thanks so much for the links. Living in earthquake country, I feel we are one big shake away from being in the position of need. A disaster can hit any of us, at anytime, and when it does we really must help each other. Take care..My thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Posted By Anonymous Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif. : 9:34 PM ET
Thanks David Beaudry for the information.
I am moving over to FL on a long term job assignment in a couple of days and the first thing I'm planning to do is to go over to the counties affected and see if I could render any help.
Posted By Anonymous Pushpa, Dallas, Texas : 10:15 PM ET
Hi, we have family members living in Lake County Florida and have been unable to reach them by phone. We live in another state and the phone lines have been busy or not working all day. Which agency can I contact that may help verify that my family is alive and safe? Any help you can give me will be very much appreciated. I will check back on this blog for updates. Thanks! Worried in MD.......
Posted By Anonymous Karl from Aberdeen MD : 10:35 PM ET
How do you know if someone is OK? Is there a hot line for the eldery in Lady Lake?
Posted By Anonymous K.T. Kelton Wayland Ma : 10:40 PM ET
Animals are also deeply affected by natural disasters and I think it would be very good to put them on here as well... I know that the SPCA Tampa Bay has come in to Sumter County to take a lot of adoptable dogs back so there is room for the wondering dogs/cats from these tornados. There website is www.spcatampabay.org
Posted By Anonymous Nicole, Tampa, FL : 11:42 PM ET
As disasters continue to occur with more severity and,in many cases, private protection is not always available, it might be wise to have a national disaster fund available. If possible a regional account could be setup and the media could promote it. This would allow us in the rest of the country to help out neighbors in their time of need.
Posted By Anonymous John Mattiassi, Gig Harbor,WA : 11:42 PM ET
Thanks for providing these numbers. Can you provide information on how someone can apply for help to FEMA?
Thank you!
Posted By Anonymous Steve, San Francisco, CA : 2:54 AM ET
We just got back home after driving up to Lady Lake (about 2 1/2 hrs. away) to bring in water, food and clothes for the survivors in the shelter.

CNN commented that there were about a dozen people staying in the shelter, but by 11pm, that number had grown a bit. -Probably 2 dozen was more accurate at that time. (They were expecting more over the next day or two.)

The Red Cross shelter volunteers were very appreciative of our efforts to help and I think we were some of the first out-of-towners to show up to lend a hand. They had received donations of clothing and food, and were grateful for all the assistance they could get.

We met others on the road on the way there as well...folks in campers and tree-haulers. We followed a small caravan of trucks on their way to volunteer to clear roadways of debris. Apparently they had done this after Hurricane Charlie as well. -it's just something they "do".

Floridians are like that... we all know that any part of our state could be hit with something, so you try and help out while you are lucky. Hopefully if you are in trouble, your fellow Floridians will be there for you too. (Living on the beach ourselves, we feel sure they will be!)

We encourage anyone who is able to this weekend to try and donate your time and energies to helping clean up or donating to the cause to help these people recover quickly. There are many elderly folks that were displaced and literally have nothing but the handouts that are coming in to the shelter now.

The local motel was packed with people, who probably have nothing as well and are less obvious than the sheltered folks right now.

Thanks Anderson, and all of the CNN staff for shedding light on this story, not just Lady Lake, but all the Florida counties affected. It helps move folks to action. It is the grass roots, caring people of our country that really pull together in times like these. If you help out, you will surely be greated with smiles and hugs. We certainly were! Those folks up there were awesome! They will be in our prayers, and hopefully in yours too. God Bless you all.
Posted By Anonymous Chrissy & Nikki, Treasure Island, FL : 3:12 AM ET
Maybe we should stop building houses out of wood/frame and start doing masonry/concrete blocks with steel inside like the Caribbean does to mitigate hurricane damage. Then maybe we would save not just money but lives.
Posted By Anonymous Anne, St. Croix, US Virgin Islands : 5:13 AM ET
now this is funny
it took less than 6 hours to get help in Florida but it took months for Katrina in new orleans.
i wondry why?
Posted By Anonymous Dedric Warren fron new orleans now in jackson ms : 7:19 AM ET
@ Steven in San Franciso,

Just to let you know, the FEMA number is 1-800-621-FEMA or you can find them on-line at www.fema.gov. FL Gov. Crist just got the feds to declare the state a disaster area so I believe you can apply even on-line now.

I just received my FEMA book yesterday because I have flood insurance in Florida. There are a lot of disclosures etc. The process is rather extensive. Good luck with your friends and/or family.
Posted By Anonymous Renee Bradenton, FL : 12:15 PM ET
To those who are posting and have lost loved ones God Bless you and my heartfelt sympathy goes out to you. To those who were on T.V today like Gene I say I gotta love ya! After the most horrific day of their lives they are saying it was the luckiest day of my life! It's true that little things mean a alot I saw so many who were just glad to be alive! I will be praying for all of you who have lost so much.
Posted By Anonymous Robin, North Olmsted Ohio : 11:54 PM ET
I have called all the numbers above and have been turned away because I live out of state...Please can you give us some information for out of state people who are willing to relocate for a week or so to help out?

Thanks in advance
Posted By Anonymous Taylor, Grand Haven MI : 12:41 AM ET
Thank you Cnn for the coveraqge:
My prayers go out to the people of Florida durning their time of great diaster.
We in Louisiana know better than most about natural diasters and what it takes to recover from them. It takes the love and support of the local community to come together with faith and strength.
I was glad to see the governer and local officals on the seen immediatly and working close with the people.
It brings to mind a quote from an elderly woman from the ninth ward of New Orleans after Katrina. She lost her home and was at the shelter waiting to leave the city. She was asked by the reporter how was going to it make after all this , she said and I quote "THE LORD WILL TAKE YOU TO IT TO BRING YOU THROUGH IT". I thought that statement put it all into perpestive.
All eyes will be on FEMA and their response to this diaster. It's their chance to prove to the people of Florida , and the country they have learned from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Thank You
and bless the people of FLorida
Posted By Anonymous Mike, St.Amant ,La : 11:52 AM ET
Oh, if only New Orleans was in Florida! President Bush was in Florida for the hurricanes there, handing out ice to people in their SUV'S as they headed down to Miami for the weekend. And now, after last week's tornadoes, the FEMA trailers are already arriving! They had tarps on their damaged roughs almost immediately, when it took months for tarps and supplies to get to New Orleans. Whoopie Goldberg was right when she said things would have been different if Katrina had hit Disneyland.

I feel bad for the Floridians, and appreciate your coverage and links to ways to help.

Linda
Boulder, Colorado
Posted By Anonymous Linda, Boulder, Colorado : 2:28 PM ET
ABOUT THE BLOG
A behind the scenes look at "Anderson Cooper 360°" and the stories it covers, written by Anderson Cooper and the show's correspondents and producers.



ARCHIVES
• 01/29/2006 - 02/05/2006
• 02/05/2006 - 02/12/2006
• 02/12/2006 - 02/19/2006
• 02/19/2006 - 02/26/2006
• 02/26/2006 - 03/05/2006
• 03/05/2006 - 03/12/2006
• 03/12/2006 - 03/19/2006
• 03/19/2006 - 03/26/2006
• 03/26/2006 - 04/02/2006
• 04/02/2006 - 04/09/2006
• 04/09/2006 - 04/16/2006
• 04/16/2006 - 04/23/2006
• 04/23/2006 - 04/30/2006
• 04/30/2006 - 05/07/2006
• 05/07/2006 - 05/14/2006
• 05/14/2006 - 05/21/2006
• 05/21/2006 - 05/28/2006
• 05/28/2006 - 06/04/2006
• 06/04/2006 - 06/11/2006
• 06/11/2006 - 06/18/2006
• 06/18/2006 - 06/25/2006
• 06/25/2006 - 07/02/2006
• 07/02/2006 - 07/09/2006
• 07/09/2006 - 07/16/2006
• 07/16/2006 - 07/23/2006
• 07/23/2006 - 07/30/2006
• 07/30/2006 - 08/06/2006
• 08/06/2006 - 08/13/2006
• 08/13/2006 - 08/20/2006
• 08/20/2006 - 08/27/2006
• 08/27/2006 - 09/03/2006
• 09/03/2006 - 09/10/2006
• 09/10/2006 - 09/17/2006
• 09/17/2006 - 09/24/2006
• 09/24/2006 - 10/01/2006
• 10/01/2006 - 10/08/2006
• 10/08/2006 - 10/15/2006
• 10/15/2006 - 10/22/2006
• 10/22/2006 - 10/29/2006
• 10/29/2006 - 11/05/2006
• 11/05/2006 - 11/12/2006
• 11/12/2006 - 11/19/2006
• 11/19/2006 - 11/26/2006
• 11/26/2006 - 12/03/2006
• 12/03/2006 - 12/10/2006
• 12/10/2006 - 12/17/2006
• 12/17/2006 - 12/24/2006
• 12/24/2006 - 12/31/2006
• 12/31/2006 - 01/07/2007
• 01/07/2007 - 01/14/2007
• 01/14/2007 - 01/21/2007
• 01/21/2007 - 01/28/2007
• 01/28/2007 - 02/04/2007
• 02/04/2007 - 02/11/2007
• 02/11/2007 - 02/18/2007
• 02/18/2007 - 02/25/2007
• 02/25/2007 - 03/04/2007
• 03/04/2007 - 03/11/2007
• 03/11/2007 - 03/18/2007
• 03/18/2007 - 03/25/2007
• 03/25/2007 - 04/01/2007
• 04/01/2007 - 04/08/2007
• 04/08/2007 - 04/15/2007
• 04/15/2007 - 04/22/2007
• 04/22/2007 - 04/29/2007
• 04/29/2007 - 05/06/2007
• 05/06/2007 - 05/13/2007
• 05/13/2007 - 05/20/2007
• 05/20/2007 - 05/27/2007
• 05/27/2007 - 06/03/2007
• 06/03/2007 - 06/10/2007
• 06/10/2007 - 06/17/2007
• 06/17/2007 - 06/24/2007
• 06/24/2007 - 07/01/2007
• 07/01/2007 - 07/08/2007
• 07/08/2007 - 07/15/2007
• 07/15/2007 - 07/22/2007
• 07/22/2007 - 07/29/2007
• 07/29/2007 - 08/05/2007
• 08/05/2007 - 08/12/2007
• 08/12/2007 - 08/19/2007
• 08/19/2007 - 08/26/2007
• 08/26/2007 - 09/02/2007
• 09/02/2007 - 09/09/2007
• 09/09/2007 - 09/16/2007
• 09/16/2007 - 09/23/2007
• 09/23/2007 - 09/30/2007
• 09/30/2007 - 10/07/2007
• 10/07/2007 - 10/14/2007
• 10/14/2007 - 10/21/2007
• 10/21/2007 - 10/28/2007
• 10/28/2007 - 11/04/2007
• 11/04/2007 - 11/11/2007
• 11/11/2007 - 11/18/2007
• 11/18/2007 - 11/25/2007
• 11/25/2007 - 12/02/2007
• 12/02/2007 - 12/09/2007
• 12/09/2007 - 12/16/2007
• 12/16/2007 - 12/23/2007
• 12/23/2007 - 12/30/2007
• 12/30/2007 - 01/06/2008

SUBSCRIBE
    What's this?
CNN Comment Policy: CNN encourages you to add a comment to this discussion. You may not post any unlawful, threatening, libelous, defamatory, obscene, pornographic or other material that would violate the law. Please note that CNN makes reasonable efforts to review all comments prior to posting and CNN may edit comments for clarity or to keep out questionable or off-topic material. All comments should be relevant to the post and remain respectful of other authors and commenters. By submitting your comment, you hereby give CNN the right, but not the obligation, to post, air, edit, exhibit, telecast, cablecast, webcast, re-use, publish, reproduce, use, license, print, distribute or otherwise use your comment(s) and accompanying personal identifying information via all forms of media now known or hereafter devised, worldwide, in perpetuity. CNN Privacy Statement.
Home  |  World  |  U.S.  |  Politics  |  Crime  |  Entertainment  |  Health  |  Tech  |  Travel  |  Living  |  Money  |  Sports  |  Time.com
© 2014 Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved.