With clean up after Hurricane Harvey well underway and Hurricane Irma set to make landfall later this week, McPherson College students, faculty and staff are participating in several relief efforts organized by the Office of Spiritual Life & Service. On Friday, September 8 in the Maker’s Space (basement) of Miller Library from 1 to 5 p.m. the campus will assemble hygiene kits that will be distributed to emergency shelters.
McPherson College is donating the supplies for the kits, which are part of Church World Service’s response to the recent disaster. CWS has committed all of the roughly 140,000 hygiene kits that are in stock to Hurricane Harvey response. There will be a need to replenish the stock, especially if Hurricane Irma hits yet this week. Hygiene kits provide basic necessities to people who have been forced to leave their homes because of disasters. Volunteers are encouraged to come for any amount of time on Friday to assemble the kits. They will be delivered to Wichita and then taken directly to a drop of site.
“We did a lot of research on charities and on what was really needed at this point,” Jen Jensen, director of spiritual life & service, said. “I wanted our community to be involved in activities that everybody could take part in, but also activities that would have a positive impact in the relief efforts. Regardless of how much time or money you have to offer, we tried to find ways to help.”
The college has also reached out to the roughly 20 students who attend McPherson College from the Houston area. “So far all of our students’ families seem to be in good shape,” Jensen said. “Some of the students’ homes have been impacted, but we haven’t heard of anyone in urgent need at this point.”
Other opportunities to support relief efforts include:
- Donate school supplies – Items can be dropped off at the Spiritual Life & Service office in Miller Library from 3 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, September 7 or at the Maker’s Space in Miller Library on Friday from 9 a.m to noon or 1 to 5 p.m. The items will be packaged and mailed to United Way for distribution to schools affected by Hurricane Harvey. “The need for school supplies will be great as school districts work quickly to return children to their daily routines,” Jensen said. “Even a few dollars will go a long way toward supplies on clearance right now.”
Support college students financially through #harveyHELP – Leaders from across higher education in Texas joined with the Communities Foundation of Texas to launch a crowdfunding campaign to give emergency aid packages to college students impacted by Hurricane Harvey to help them stay in school. According to Jensen, this program is being shared with colleges through ICUT, the Texas athletic conference equivalent to the KCAC. Donations can be made at the #harveyHELP GoFundMe page.