Madison County Emergency Management has been busy this past week and weekend with relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina. We are coordinating support efforts for victims and are happy to announce that our community has been wonderful and giving above my expectations! THANK YOU to each of you who have donated time, money, or goods to help relieve the discomforts of those displaced by the recent Hurricane Katrina
Our local efforts this weekend included the delivery of four trailer loads of supplies sent out through the Madisonville Volunteer Fire Department. The first trailer load went out Saturday morning to the shelter in Buffalo, Texas. Our donations helped them to prepare for evacuees and to provide snacks and diaper bags to those evacuees traveling by bus through their city, since one of their service stations is a designated stop on bus routes. They housed up to ten families and had numerous evacuees served by their efforts and our donations.
A second load of supplies went out early Sunday morning to Kinder, Louisiana, where that small town is providing meals for about 1,000 evacuees. Their feeding and clothing efforts are being met through the churches of the area and through donations from us. An additional load of supplies was also routed to Kinder on Monday night, with specific requests for non-perishables and serving goods. Donations from local churches made it possible for us to provide enough paper goods for about a week's worth of feeding for those families. People there are staying in RV's, motels, and private homes. Many are intending to make their new home there, since they have little or nothing to go home to. The people of Kinder, Louisiana, have been MOST GRATEFUL and appreciate us beyond measure!
Another load of clothing, which was graciously sorted by a local youth group, was taken into the mission in Houston for distribution there. Those receiving the donation were very grateful and the clothing was able to be distributed quickly, since it had already been sorted and boxed.
Several families have stayed in local motels here, and motel owners have been very generous in donating nights to those evacuees. Local churches and individuals have fed them and provided for them. Bryan/College Station has had evacuees sheltered there, but that number decreased over night last night. They are able to shelter up to 1,000 victims, but had under 400 this morning.
A group of evacuees came through the fire department on Saturday. Madison County First Responders accessed their medical needs and Dr. Hubley donated his expertise and time to check them out. Guardian Ambulance was also called out. Our local Salvation Army teamed with Wal-Mart to provide prescriptions for their medical needs. Brookshire Bros. and Clouser were also called upon to help. The volunteers at the fire department welcomed these evacuees and assisted them in getting clean clothing, food, and supplies for them to complete their journeys, although they did not want to stay locally. A local church has been instrumental in offering to open a shelter locally; however, we are attempting to follow the state government's plan of centralizing shelters and will continue to support that plan, unless the situation changes. Local emergency management is excited to find so much support and is interested in hearing from anyone who would like to be assigned to a shelter team or other volunteer mission in the future. You may call Shelly at 936-348-3317 or Janet at 936-348-3810 to sign up as a volunteer in times of disaster!
The Madisonville Volunteer Fire Department will remain open this week from 5 p.m. - 8 p.m. to accept donations of non-perishable food, bottled water, canned drinks, new underwear, wash clothes, hand towels, baby goods, paper goods, personal hygiene items, black hair care products, and first aid supplies. The First Baptist Church will also be open and accept donations during the day and Wednesday evening. The Madisonville State Bank is accepting monetary donations to the Salvation Army, through their drive-in or inside tellers. For further information on donations, please contact the fire department at 348-9297, Shelly at 348-3317 or 348-0504, or Amy at 348-6105 or 903-536-7700.
Your county and city government are proud to work with our local citizens to provide relief for the victims of Hurricane Katrina and appreciate your help!
Madison County Emergency Management Office
Madisonville Volunteer Fire Department
Madisonville Police Department