Over the weekend, I watched Hurricane Irma ravage the southeast, destroying homes and communities in its wake. It’s hard to believe that this storm followed so closely on the heels of Hurricane Harvey, which decimated the greater Houston area just 2 weeks ago.

We have been in touch with our state partners in Florida and in surrounding states.They are in the process of reaching out to members to assess the damage incurred and identify immediate needs. Almost 70% of Florida is without electricity, making this a significant challenge.

Our hearts go out to the staff and residents of these communities.

After Hurricane Harvey, we created the LeadingAge Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Fund. To date, we’ve raised more than $220,000. However, with Irma and new potential storms, we are renaming the fund the LeadingAge Hurricane Disaster Relief Fund. Donations collected will go to any member affected by these hurricanes and will be distributed by the highest level of need.

We are starting to hear more about Harvey’s impact on our members in Texas. Communities in Beaumont, TX were without water for many days, forcing staff members at one organization to flush toilets with pool water. Many communities in the affected area were without power for more than a week enduring hot and humid conditions. And one community will never be able to return.

We need to raise more money and are again appealing to you for help. So many of you have already very generously donated, but, due to dire circumstances, we must ask this of you again.

I challenge our members to raise $1 million to help the thousands of staff and residents devastated by these disasters. Following Hurricane Katrina, we collectively raised $1.2 million. I’m confident we can do this again.

DONATE NOW

100% of all funds go directly to those in need. Many of you have offered to send supplies to communities. However, needs change daily and the easiest way to meet these needs is through a cash donation.

In the coming weeks, we will keep you updated as we learn more from our state partners and members in the impacted areas.

Please donate now. Your generosity ensures that our LeadingAge family can begin to rebuild what they have lost.

Sending thoughts and prayers to all.

Katie