- Sep 25, 2017
Area businesses recently opened their hearts and wallets, finding creative ways to step up and respond to the huge need following the hurricanes that ravaged Texas and Florida. In addition to monetary contributions, members are donating badly needed items to help first responders, residents and businesses cope with the enormous physical and emotional loss.
The Northbrook Fire Department responded to a call from the Texas Fire Marshal’s office asking for Fire Department t-shirts. “We sent them a big box full of various sized t-shirts that were requested to keep first responders clothed and identified during operational shifts,” according to Northbrook Fire Chief Jose Torres. To also help emergency workers, AmpliVox donated megaphones to the American Red Cross to communicate and make announcements at disaster relief sites. Locally, the Northbrook Rotary Club pledged $2,000 to purchase ShelterBox privacy tents for Houston storm victims, that can be set up to house evacuees.
Employees at 22nd Century Media in Northbrook partnered with sister offices in Orland Park to collect badly needed items, including ready to eat food items, sports drinks and water, baby items, blankets and pet supplies. The North Suburban YMCA is part of an national Y effort to collect a specific list of needed supplies for distribution through the YMCA of Greater Houston. According to Kim Nyren, the Y will be a drop off source for school supplies that will be shipped to Houston.
To help animal shelters caring for cats and dogs lost or abandoned in the storms, Rover’s Place is selling Guardian Angel bottle cap charms. Recognizing the personal, emotional and psychological toll that the hurricanes take on families faced with devastating loss, Grace Lutheran Church offered aid in the form of furry companionship. The church sent six “comfort dogs,” trained in Northbrook, to Houston, Dallas and surrounding areas. “These dogs are friends who bring a calming influence. It’s an important part of the healing process for people to feel a emotional connection and just have the warmth of a companion,” comments Director Tim Hetzner. Plans are underway to send dogs to Florida as well
Whole Foods Market, headquartered in Texas, set up a Team Member Disaster Relief Fund to provide continual assistance. “We have also set up a customer campaign at the register, which the Northbrook store participated in. It has already raised $1 million,” according Nancy LaBreacht. The donations will be matched by both corporate Whole Foods and Amazon with all funds going directly to The American Red Cross.
NorthShore University HealthSystem, which includes Glenbrook Hospital, has also donated $20,000 on behalf of its employees to the American Red Cross for hurricane relief efforts in Texas.
California Pizza Kitchen participated in a corporate wide fundraiser, donating 20% of all food and beverage sales to “Feeding Texas” which provides food boxes, shelter meals and cleaning supplies to families impacted by the hurricane.
Any Chamber member interested in promoting ongoing relief efforts is encouraged to share the information, where it can be posted on the Chamber’s Facebook page or listed in the e-Announcements.