Many of us watched in disbelief on May 20, as a mile-wide EF-5 tornado tore through the heavily populated community of Moore. Just one day earlier, it was the towns of Shawnee, Little Axe, Bethel Acres and Carney facing a similar horror. Then one week later, El Reno and parts of south Oklahoma City were in the cross-hairs of yet another destructive storm.
May was a devastating month in Oklahoma. The loss of life and homes is heartbreaking.
Although Infant Crisis Services has never been a disaster relief agency, an emergency of such catastrophic proportions demanded immediate response from any organization that could offer help. We mobilized immediately, donating diapers, wipes, formula and other baby necessities to churches and community centers that were serving as shelters for displaced families. Infant Crisis Services also staffed tornado relief distribution sites in the hard hit neighborhoods for weeks following the tornadoes. We not only handed out baby items, but also water, cleaning supplies, non-perishable food and clothing to the families impacted by the storms. We were able to help hundreds of families in the days after the tornadoes, and we will continue to help those families through the rebuilding process. Each of them received a referral to our main location for additional assistance.
May’s violent storms could very well be one of the biggest crises our state has ever seen. Our commitment and promise is to always be there for the tiniest victims of any disaster, and to help their families carry the burden as they piece their homes and their lives back together.
Tue, June 4, 2013
by Melissa Smuzynski