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FCHS students accepting donations for Louisiana flood victims

by Mari-Alice Jasper, Courier staff

The Fort Campbell Courier
Fort Campbell, KY | September 8, 2016

Paper plates, hand sanitizer and school supplies are just a few things Fort Campbell High School students are asking people to donate for their “Operation Overload” to help the victims of last month’s flood in Louisiana.

Operation Overload is a schoolwide project organized by two student organizations – Student to Student and Project Falcon.

Students will be at the Falcons home football game at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Fryar Stadium accepting donations

Between Aug. 11 and 14, more than 20 inches of rain fell in and around East Baton Rouge, according to officials at The National Weather Service.

In some parishes, as much as 2 feet of rain fell in 48 hours. This is the worst natural disaster to strike the United States since Hurricane Sandy, four years ago, according to officials at the American Red Cross.

To help serve these communities, the Falcons are working to fill a U-Haul with items requested by Louisiana based nonprofit organizations have.

Ann Gerstner, FCHS media specialist, will drive the U-Haul to the Acadiana area of Louisiana Sept. 16 to deliver the supplies.

“Our main goal is to unite the student body under one cause and that cause right now is to have an impact on a community that is really hurting,” said Chloe Sims, Student to Student president. “Even if it may seem like a simple thing, we don’t know what impact we could potentially have on the lives of other people who are struggling right now.”

Sims said the focus of both student organizations is to serve communities, local, national or international.  “As a military community we are no strangers to sudden change and having to adapt to an environment quickly,” she said. “I think it’s a little bit easier for us to understand what this community is going through. We want to stand along-side Louisiana in support. Even though we may not have been through a flood we know what it’s like to have to get in there and just get it done, no matter what.”

Deonte Mayfield, Student to Student secretary, said donation boxes are located in every school across the installation. He said they have already received several donations, but are still working to fill up the truck. Donations will be accepted at the schools through Sept. 14.

“As Americans we have to help each other out when disasters like these strike,” he said. “We are all that we’ve got, so we just have to look out for each other. I’m pretty sure if there was a flood here they would do the same thing for us.”

It will cost at least $30 million to recover from this flood, but the scope and magnitude of ongoing flood damage could cause that price to fluctuate, according to Red Cross officials.

“We aren’t even asking for money,” Mayfield said. “We are asking for simple items that may be overlooked in our everyday life. Items that we take for granted now. Just please being in whatever you can to help out. It’s for a great cause.”

By the numbers

60,000: homes damaged

6,900,000,000,000: gallons of rainfall in one week

13: deaths statewide

$30 million: Estimated cost of the flood so far

20,000: people rescued

12: parishes declared as disaster areas

*Numbers according to CNN as of Aug. 22.

ITEMS needed

•School supplies

•Paper towels

•Paper plates

•Utensils

•Rubber gloves

•Sponges

•Toiletries

•Hand sanitizer

•Toilet paper

•Sanitary wipes

•Bottled water

All items can be donated at Fort Campbell schools until Sept. 14. Donations will also be accepted at FCHS’s home football game at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Fryar Stadium.


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