May God Bless Those Affected By This Week’s Tornadoes

No words can express the sorrow that those affected by the tornadoes that ripped up lives and homes in Alabama must be feeling this week. Brothers, sisters, sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, friends… gone in a heartbeat.

It is hard to conceive how someone so small as one reading this blog can make a difference in something so big. But, we can make a difference. We can pray. We can reach out to touch those around us. And we can open our hearts and hands and pocketbooks.

The following was copied from the blog as a compilation of ways to make a difference.

“1. Cash donations: Donate to the Birmingham chapter of the Red Cross for the Alabama Tornado Relief fund. The donation box is shown above.

* Red Cross: Send the text message “REDCROSS” to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
* Red Cross: Donate at any Regions Bank branch.
* Governor’s Tornado Relief Fund: Donate online or mail a check to Governor’s Emergency Relief Fund, Box 1523, Montgomery, AL 36102.
* Salvation Army: Send the text message “GIVE” to 80888 to make a $10 donation.
* Salvation Army: Send checks to The Salvation Army Disaster Relief, Box 100339, Atlanta, GA 30384-0339.
* Southern Baptist Convention: Donate online.

2. Birmingham city council member Johnathan Austin says to volunteer, call the Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency at (205) 254-2039.

3. Hands on Birmingham has already set up a volunteer group for tornado assistance. Sign up now, and the nonprofit group will contact you as opportunities arise.

* Email Sidewalk Moving Picture Festival to join its Hands on Birmingham team. Include name, age, email and phone.

4. Donate to an area food bank through the Alabama Food Bank Association website. (hat tip: Birmingham Bargain Mom)

5. Conserve water through Friday, as requested by the Birmingham Water Works and Sewer Board.

6. A Toomer’s for Tuscaloosa page has started on Facebook, mirroring the Tide for Toomer’s effort started in February.

7. A $50 donation to the Red Cross at the Talladega Superspeedway gives donors the opportunity to drive their cars on the track May 6-8.

8. Amanda Carlisle at A Few Short Cuts suggests using coupons to obtain needed items for free to donate.

9. ABC 33/40 will hold an on-air telethon from 5-8 p.m. Today.

Donation drop-off sites

* All Sears locations across Alabama.
* Clothes, bottled water, snacks, etc.: 9 a.m.-noon Friday, Prince of Peace Catholic Church, 4600 Preserve Pkwy., Hoover. (from @mirimomma)
* Clothing, work gloves, shovels, wheelbarrows, toiletries, toilet paper, towels, garbage bags, snacks (individually wrapped): Christian Service Mission, 3600 Third Ave. S., Avondale, (205) 252-9906. (from The 35212)
* Bottled water, coffee, diapers, unopened prepacked foods (no clothes, please): Boutwell Auditorium, 1930 Rev. Abraham Woods Jr. Blvd.
* Bottled water: City Action Partnership office, 1704 Fifth Ave. N., downtown.
* Water, non-perishable food items, toiletries, clothing (all sizes): 8 a.m.-noon Saturday, Palmerdale United Methodist Church, 7776 Alabama 75, Pinson, (205) 681-9762.
* Clothing, non-perishable foods, bottled water: Cornerstone Christian School, 24975 Alabama 25, Columbiana. (205) 669-7777.
* Diapers: Alabama Baby and Child magazine has drop-off sites in Hoover, North Shelby County, Mountain Brook, Vestavia Hills, Alabaster and Homewood.
* Bottled water: Whole Foods Market, 3100 Cahaba Village Plaza, Mountain Brook.
* Water: Bruno’s, 3780 Riverchase Village, Hoover.
* Clothes, food, water, personal care items, blankets, pillows, etc.: Image Makers salon, 2518 University Blvd. Tuscaloosa, (205) 366-1986.
* Water, soap, bandages, washcloths, toothbrushes, hand towels, Ziploc 1-gallon bags, other simple supplies: Riverchase United Methodist Church, 1953 Old Montgomery Highway, Hoover, Rev. Matt Lacey, (205) 202-1879.
* Toiletries, non-perishable food items, shirts (adult sizes only), socks, diapers, water: 9 a.m.-8 p.m., Church of the Highlands, Grants Mill Campus (south parking lot), 5901 Overton Road, Irondale.
* Blankets, clothing (all sizes, T-shirts, jeans, shorts, children’s), feminine products, diapers, baby food, insulin (and other urgent medications), toys (for younger children), bandages, socks, jackets, bottled water, chips, juice (individual), packaged food for distribution, fruit cups, paper towels, tissues, toilet paper: Belk Center, 2101 Bowers Park Drive, Tuscaloosa.
* Bottled water and drinks, diapers, wipes, canned goods, toiletries, other items: RealtySouth, 428 Main St., Trussville.
* Used clothing, new packages of underwear and socks, toiletry items: Kuttin’ Up Hair Salon, 107 N. Chalkville Road, (205) 661-5887.
* Bottled water, canned foods, toilet paper, baby wipes, toothbrushes, toothpaste, new blankets, new pillows, all packaged foods (non-perishable), bandages, soap, shampoo, conditioner, etc.: Talladega County Revenue Department, Talladega County Courthouse. Tara LaClair, (256) 419-3670.
* Bottled water, toothbrushes, baby wipes, hand sanitizer, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, soap, toilet paper: Until 7 p.m. Friday. Walmart locations in Hoover, Pelham, Wildwood and Bessemer.
* Trash bags, Clorox spray, batteries (all sizes), paper towels, baby wipes, diapers (baby and adult), water (bottles and gallon jugs), work gloves, snack food (non-perishable and packaged), personal hygiene items (toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, etc.), instant formula, toilet paper, emergency candles, first aid items, hand sanitizer, Tupperware bins (large enough to hold found belongings), markers, basic over-the-counter medicines for adults (Tylenol, Advil, etc.), gas (for generators), oil and gas mixture (for chainsaws): Crestwood Tavern, 5500 Crestwood Blvd.
* Bottled water, non-perishable food items (easy to open), batteries, as well as cash donations: Saturday. Silvertron Cafe, 3813 ClairmontAve., Forest Park, and Mountain Brook Creamery, 2715 Cahaba Road.
* Pet supplies: leashes, litter, boxes, crates, food, treats, etc. Parkside Cafe, 4036 Fifth Ave. S., Avondale, (205) 595-0920.
* Taylor Bug’s Kids Boutique and Consignment, 1355 Hueytown Road, Hueytown.
* Water and toiletries: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, Missionary Society of the Mt. Zion Missionary Baptist Church, 221 Roebuck Drive, Roebuck. Patricia Warren, (205) 914-2883.
* Nonperishable food, bottled water, cots, sleeping bags, flashlights, batteries, camping items, small camping grills and utensils, diapers, baby formula. Friday. Academy Sports, 2810 John Hawkins Pkwy., Hoover.
* Gardendale First Baptist Church, 940 Main St., South Campus.
* Hygiene products, toiletries, canned food, clothes, shoes, monetary donations. 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Liberty Worship Center, 2500 35th Ave. N., North Birmingham. D. Lawson, (205) 215-0862.
* Pinson Valley Youth Association. Ballpark, 7617 Faucett Cut-Off Road, Pinson.
* Clothing, supplies: Miles College. Ashley, (205) 936-5867.
* Toiletries, non-perishable food, snacks, baby items (diapers, wipes, formula, sippy cups), batteries, flashlights: Till 9 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, 2-9 p.m. Sunday. Concord Baptist Church, 11215 Shelby County 22, Calera.

Volunteer opportunities

* Tuscaloosa: call Nancy Green at (205) 561-4169.
* Tuscaloosa: Report to St. Matthias’ Episcopal Church, 2310 Skyland Blvd. E., or call (205) 553-7282.
* Elmore County: Elmore County High School, 155 N. College Ave., Eclectic.
* Birmingham Baptist Association: Call (205) 599-3245 and give your cell number.
* Fultondale Police Department: Report to the Fultondale Public Library — where the Red Cross is stationed — 1015 Walker Chapel Road.
* Salvation Army: Call (205) 328-2420.
* Brookwood: Report to Brookwood City Hall. Need chainsaws, ice, sandwich fixings and cash. Call Melissa Camp at (205) 394-1813.
* Metro Birmingham Branch NAACP: Volunteers needed at Scott Elementary School, Cherry Avenue and U.S. 78 starting at 7:30 a.m. each day. Call Anthony A. Johnson (205) 541-9719, Hezekiah Jackson IV (205) 516-9806, Myrna Jackson (205)923-7989 or 243-1355, Terry G. Collins (205) 901-8651.

Volunteer events

* Saturday: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Greater Birmingham Ministries, 2304 12th Ave. N., downtown: distribute food and clothing. [Facebook]
* Friday: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Briarwood Presbyterian Church, 2200 Briarwood Way, Fellowship Hall D: prepare sack lunches for victims and search-and-rescue personnel; drop off bread, sandwich meat, cheese, chips, crackers, sandwich bags, paper lunch bags. Call Liz Entrekin at 991-5916 or visit website.
* Friday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Donate blood to LifeSouth at Paine Intermediate School, 7600 Gadsden Highway, Trussville.
* Saturday: 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. East Lake United Methodist Church, 7753 First Ave. S.: neighborhood cleanup.
* Saturday: 9:30 a.m.-noon. Norwood Resource Center, 501 27th St. N.: community cleanup, bring gloves, breakfast served to volunteers at 9:30.
* Friday-Sunday: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Donate blood to Red Cross at UAB North Pavilion, at the corner of 18th Street South and 6th Avenue. Validated parking available in the Fifth Avenue lot.
* Saturday: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Clean up Turkey Creek Nature Preserve, 3906 Turkey Creek Road. Meet at 8 a.m. at Starbucks, 1658 Montclair Road, Walmart shopping center, Eastwood, to travel together to preserve. Email Jonathan Kudulis at or call Krista Conlin at (205) 937-3777.”

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