Alabama tornado relief: Can you help?

After 5 days without power, I was finally able to charge my computer and talk about the devastation that happened Wednesday, April 27, 2011, in my community and the state.

This gas station is just 2 miles up the road from our house. Photo by Glenn Baeske/Huntsville Times.

Tornadoes ripped across Alabama, from Huntsville, home of the U.S. Space & Rocket Center and NASA, to Tuscaloosa, home of the University of Alabama. The devastation is unreal, and President Obama visited Tuscaloosa on Friday.

And while Tuscaloosa is getting most of the attention, it’s not the only place affected.

Several small towns were obliterated. Towns where I played softball, towns that I drove through on my way to Brewer State Junior College, towns whose schools I covered during my time as a sportswriter.

Communities gone, including part of mine. Thousands of people across the state are left with nothing.

All these places need help. So fire up your phone and text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to tornado relief here in my beloved Sweet Home Alabama. Or visit Red Cross to give online.

If Charlie Sheen can pitch in, why not you? Today in Tuscaloosa, the actor bought flashlights at a local Kmart to hand out to those still without power. I hope he’s serious about doing more to help and that this isn’t just some self-promo.

And Paul Walker of the Fast and Furious movie franchise fame is also helping out with his organization ROWW, Reach Out Worldwide. He tweeted this weekend:

I’m glad these guys are paying attention and trying to help. Especially Paul Walker … I would watch him hand out bottled water all day. :-) Any other celebs out there who want to raise awareness and money and donations for tornado relief in Alabama? Come on, down! We’ll feed you and hug you and show you some of that world-renowned Southern hospitality.

I am so grateful that my family and my home came through these devastating storms this week. And I’ll be doing what I can to help my neighbors and community heal and rebuild in the coming weeks and months.

I hope you’ll help, too. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to tornado relief. We appreciate y’all!

16 Responses to Alabama tornado relief: Can you help?
  1. Ri
    May 2, 2011 | 11:30 pm

    Done! :) And, I think I’ll make a button we can all put on our blogs with that info. And, what if we had a direct PayPal button where folks could donate directly? (Those who don’t want to do it via text, for whatever reason.) I could set up a Music Mama Paypal, with a clickable link here…and whatever we collect you could donate directly to your local RedCross, Tiffani – what do you think?

    So glad you and your family are safe, and so sorry for all those whose lives were devastated. Glad you posted this – it always seems so surreal, but when you hear details directly from someone you know and love, it sort of “hits home” and moves you to get involved. (Well, it does me, at least.)

    I invite ALL the Mamas and our extended online family to brainstorm ways that we can help BEYOND our individual donations. We’re only limited by our own inaction, folks.

    Love you, Tiff. Roll Tide! <3

  2. Tiffani
    May 2, 2011 | 11:42 pm

    Thanks, Ri. I just found that video and had to upload it. I don’t think people grasp the magnitude of these tornadoes. All in one day. In one state.

    Whatever you guys decide is fine. My local community center has been feeding people, the homeless and volunteers alike, for the last few days, and I know they could use funds and food and batteries and water and sunscreen and diapers and feminine products … and the list goes on and on.

    Thanks so much for letting me get this out there! I plan to update when I can.

    Love! Peace! Rock on!
    Tiffani´s last [type] ..Tornadoes wipe out part of my community

  3. Ri
    May 2, 2011 | 11:51 pm

    OMG. That video…omg.
    I don’t have a whole lot of “Blog Clout”, but I’m going to use whatever I do have to try to help. There’s got to be something.
    Good Lord.

  4. oh_pook
    May 3, 2011 | 9:43 am

    Continued prayers for you and all those affected by these spring storms that have wreaked so much havoc on so many.


    It’s all so sad, makes my heart hurt… I must say I’m proud of the way people have come together here in St. Louis after the tornado. Gives one hope for humanity during these trying times.

  5. Velma
    May 3, 2011 | 6:12 pm

    Glad to hear you’re unharmed; we came through it as well. Rolling up our sleeves and pitching in where we can. Give that big girl a hug; Velma and Scott

  6. Nancy&Pete
    May 3, 2011 | 6:59 pm

    Was good to read your account and know you’re ok… Love, AuntNancy&CousinPete

  7. belle
    May 3, 2011 | 8:56 pm

    That video… My heart just breaks for everyone this affected by the 4/27 storms. We drove through part of your community on the way to my Mom’s, and I had to choke tears back. But on the way home, driving through Hackleburg? I cried. Couldn’t believe my eyes.

    We passed one site where a family had pitched a tent, I presume near where their former home stood, with an American flag proudly flying beside. Talk about an uncrushable spirit!

    I am so glad you and your family came through these storms unharmed. And I am so proud of the people of Alabama for coming together as they have, helping one another, many who have lost everything.

    Now that my sons and I are back, we plan on helping out whenever, wherever, and however we can.

    Other celebrities helping out: The Rocket (local radio station) said Sublime were in Birmingham helping out. How cool is that? And Amos Lee I think had a Red Cross benefit sound check before his Birmingham show on Friday. I really wish more celebrities were on board with this, though. After all, it’s been reported that this disaster is on par with 9/11 and Katrina.
    belle´s last [type] ..There’s nothing like seeing your child taken away in an ambulance to put things in proper perspective

  8. Tiffani
    May 3, 2011 | 11:40 pm

    Pook, tornadoes suck! Thanks! I’m so proud of how we’ve pulled together to do what it takes to help others.

    Nancy, Pete & Velma, thanks for checking in on us! We are good! Love y’all!

    Kim, we live in an awesome community, don’t we? Very cool to hear about Sublime and Amos!
    Tiffani´s last [type] ..Tornadoes wipe out part of my community

  9. Larissa
    May 4, 2011 | 5:27 pm

    Hi Tiffani,
    I used to volunteer at the Red Cross, they’re certainly doing an amazing job! sending my regards and a 10$ for the tornado relief!
    Good luck!
    Larissa´s last [type] ..How to do a manicure in only 5 steps

    • Tiffani
      May 4, 2011 | 11:51 pm

      Thanks, Larissa! Both for your volunteer service and your donation. Much appreciated!

  10. Bethany
    May 15, 2011 | 10:57 pm

    Great post – I’m in Mobile and have friends in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham. Glad to hear things are getting somewhat back in order around you.
    Bethany´s last [type] ..My Inaugural Ride

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