Staff Blog

This is a space where Foundation staff share their thoughts and musings on giving and community:

Giving After a Disaster

Posted by: Dan Smith on 11/19/2018

As we begin Thanksgiving week, a time when many families and friends gather to reflect on life's blessings and share gratitude, wildfires continue to burn in California, with 80 people reported dead and almost 1,300 unaccounted for in the Camp Fire—the state’s deadliest and most destructive in its history. And residents in Florida, North Carolina, and other Southeastern states are still assessing the devastation wreaked by Hurricane Michael in October and Hurricane Florence in September. Natural disasters have become so frequent—often making their way through the news cycle within a few days—that as a society, it sometimes feels like we have become numb to their damaging impact on communities, both here in the United States and other parts of the world.

Many of us have a deep desire to help the victims of disasters, just like so many reached out to help Vermonters after Tropical Storm Irene in 2011. Community foundations have a strong understanding of the places they serve and when disaster strikes, often take a leadership role in identifying how to best provide both short- and long-term support to their communities. As a result of experiencing Irene, we created a Disaster-Related Giving page on our website to help people think through giving options in the aftermath of a disaster. It includes a link to the Center for Disaster Philanthropy—a key resource for up-to-date information on natural and humanitarian disasters. And of course, our staff is always available to discuss giving options with you. 

On behalf of the entire Vermont Community Foundation staff, I wish you and your family a holiday season filled with love and gratitude.

P.S. Don't forget about #GivingTuesday on November 27th! This global movement encourages people to help others through the gift of time, donations, goods, or their voice.

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