Donation Dollars

By: Natalie Swaby
By: Natalie Swaby

Ice and water, truck loads of food and supplies, and first aid... the relief keeps rolling in and so do donations.

Jane Richardson of the Badger Chapter of the Red Cross reports, "nationally more than $400 million for disaster relief just for the Red Cross."

The Salvation Army has collected $40 million. In most cases it is being used for food, shelter, and water. For the Red Cross this is the largest Disaster Relief Operation in history.

"We opened 485 shelters in fifteen states, we've served 142,000 survivors in those shelters, we've served millions of meals, and we expect to probably be providing services for many weeks to come," says Richardson.

And the Red Cross is not alone. Many charity organizations, small groups, and individuals are trying to help, making it important not to overlap or waste. Federal Emergency Management Agency is coordinating the relief agencies.

In regards to knowing where each dollar goes, Major Bruce Bailey of the Salvation Army says, "our books are open to any responsible organization that has credentials and would like to see where the money is spent."

Charity Navigator, at, has a rating system for relief agencies.

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