Our Opinion: Contribute to victims of Hurricane Matthew-spawned flooding


Residents of the Wyoming Valley know as well as anyone that recovering from a flood requires more than a few days and a few dollars.

It takes a massive, multiyear effort to help people repair or rebuild their stricken homes, schools and businesses. It can take even longer to heal the emotional damage.

You can provide life-altering support to victims of Hurricane Matthew, the Category 5 storm that tore through the Caribbean Sea and past the East Coast this month, spawning widespread flooding in the Carolinas and Virginia. Donate today to a reputable aid organization.

In parts of North Carolina, residents continue to cope with raging – and potentially deadly – rivers and streams. Assessing the damage in some areas where the water has yet to recede remains challenging. Not even the death toll is certain. Some sources blame the storm for nearly 40 fatalities in the United States and more than 1,000 overall, mostly in hard-hit Haiti.

As Luzerne County residents learned in June 1972, and again in September 2011, a flood initially can leave you scrambling for safety, then scouting for food, clean water, shelter and clothing. People who were dislocated when the Susquehanna River rushed over its banks during those natural disasters will attest that some possessions never can be recovered.

The American Red Cross already has mobilized 3,000 disaster workers in four states stricken by Matthew, distributing ready-to-eat meals and other supplies, as well as providing lodging, according to the agency’s website. In Haiti, meanwhile, more than 200 of its staffers are helping to distribute relief provisions to some of the nation’s 61,000 displaced residents.

Other organizations, such as the Salvation Army, are similarly trying to minimize the human suffering and instill victims with a sense that things ultimately will get much better.

Many of you know – from having battled back after a flood – what a difference a helping hand, a kind gesture or a financial gift can make.

If you are able, please give.



Fundraising campaigns are underway to bring relief to Hurricane Matthew’s victims in the United States and internationally. Among the many options:

American Red Cross. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS, or text the word MATTHEW to 90999 to make a $10 donation. To specify for what purpose your donation is used, print and mail the agency’s donation form.

GlobalGiving. Visit globalgiving.org/matthew.

Hope for Haiti. Visit hopeforhaiti.com.

North Carolina Disaster Relief Fund. Visit NCDisasterRelief.org.