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City-wide donation initiative to aid victims of Hurricane Harvey


Mayor Byron W. Brown is asking Buffalo residents to participate in a city-wide donation initiative to aid persons impacted by Hurricane Harvey. “As the City of Good Neighbors, we understand the importance of helping out those in need. Hundreds of thousands of people in Texas, particularly the residents of Houston, need our help and we are honored to lend a hand,” Mayor Brown said. “Basic personal care and back-to-school items are badly needed and will be much-appreciated by so many who have lost so much to Hurricane Harvey. I have no doubt Buffalo residents will open their hearts and wallets to purchase and donate these basic necessities.”

Joined by Major Thomas Applin of the Buffalo Salvation Army, Buffalo Common Council President Darius Pridgen, and several Buffalo Common Council Members to detail the collection effort, The Mayor’s office issued the following list of much needed supplies: new toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, towels, blankets, baby formula, diapers, baby wipes, deodorant, shampoo, cases of water, crayons, pencils, pens and notebooks. A more extensive list of donation drop-off locations and requested items can be found on the City of Buffalo website:

The City of Buffalo, in conjunction with the Salvation Army, True Bethel Baptist Church will establish drop-off points around the City for the donated goods. Starting with City Hall, True Bethel, at 907 E. Ferry St. and the Salvation Army headquarters, at 960 Main Street. Donations will be accepted starting Tuesday, Sept. 5th

“The barrels of donated goods will be transported to Texas on September 11th, the national day of service which commemorates the victims, survivors and first-responders of the 9/11 attacks. Buffalo’s delivery will be part of that continuing tribute and a gesture of kindness to our fellow Americans recovering the wrath of Hurricane Harvey’s devastation,” Mayor Brown said.

Buffalo Common Council President Darius Pridgen, who is also the pastor of True Bethel Baptist Church, said this donation drive is a way to help the people of Houston and the other hardest hit communities.

“It’s the right thing to do for our brothers and sisters in Texas who are facing an unbelievable level of hardship.  Here in Buffalo we’re used to getting two, three or even four feet of snow. It’s rough, but we can shovel and plow it away.  Imagine getting four or more feet of rain. They need our help and I have no doubt the people of Buffalo will come through,” Council President Pridgen said.

Photo credit, U.S. Department of Defense

Hurricane Harvey by-the-numbers

Early estimates are in and the numbers are devastating, ABC News reports:

85,149: Homes estimated to be damaged or destroyed by Harvey, according to Friday’s data from the Texas Division of Emergency Management.

364,000: People who have registered for assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as of Friday, according to FEMA.

42,399 :People in shelters as of Friday, according to the Texas governor.

1.3 million: The population of the Houston metropolitan area lacking health insurance, according to Census estimates.

22.5 percent: Houston population living below the poverty line, according to Census figures.

Over 1,900,000: Meals distributed by FEMA in Texas as of Friday.

Over 1,960,000: Liters of water distributed by FEMA in Texas as of Friday.

The amount of water that rushed into the Houston Area is unimaginable to most people, CNN recently posted these before and after pictures documenting the devastation. The New York Times also created a link where readers can enter their zip code in an attempt to relate the scale of water that flooded Texas. For our area, the amount of water is equal to:

• A cube of water about 2.5 miles high and wide, to borrow from The Washington Post’s depiction on Sunday.

• About 10 percent of Lake Erie.

• The biggest waterfall at Niagara Falls, Horseshoe Falls, pouring across Texas for about nine months.

Lead photo credit

Written by Jessica Marinelli

Jessica Marinelli

Jessica Marinelli is an author, speaker, coach, marketer, and business development strategist. Her professional consulting company, MEMC handles all aspects of marketing and business development planning and implementation, assisting with strategic planning initiatives and the creation of marketing action plans, as well as planning and executing private and public events, including: the coaching of individuals, multi-day conferences, as well as other development initiatives. In addition to her work with MEMC, Jessica oversees the day-to-day operations and strategic marketing efforts at Local Matters, Inc. the parent company of Buffalo Rising.

She is active in her community and serves on several non-profit boards, such as WNY Heritage Magazine, O'Connell & Company Productions, and the Women's Business Center (WBC) Advisory Board. She is also a Democratic Committee Member in the Town of Tonawanda. Most recently, She has been asked to serve as the Marketing Consultant for the WBC's COVID Recovery Task Force.

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