Whether you need assistance or want to help, we've organized volunteer opportunities and resources for our community during this time difficult time. We will continue to update this information.
Donate Water or Food
Although the “Boil Water” directive has been lifted, there are still many people across the county that have no water due to broken pipes. Additionally, due to the food shortages in the grocery stores, there are many people who have little or no access to food. If you have extra bottled water and/or non-perishable food items that you are willing to donate, you can drop them off at the HCRP Headquarters at 2501A Central Parkway, Suite A11 on the following days.
Tuesday 2/23: 10:00am - 2:00pm
Wednesday 2/24: 10:00am - 2:00pm
Thursday 2/25: 10:00am - 2:00pm
Harris County Commissioner Tom Ramsey and his staff will be helping us to distribute the bottled water and non-perishable food to those in need at various distribution sites.
If you need to drop off at a different time, please let us know at [email protected] and we can coordinate.
Join Us in Volunteering
We had an overwhelming response to our Monday 2/22 shift at the Houston Food Bank and we are grateful for those who have stepped up to help! More people volunteered to work than we had spots available! The Houston Food Bank still needs volunteers to help sort and pack food items for community distribution as people work to recover from impacts of this winter storm - so we have scheduled two other volunteer shifts this week. Sign up for a shift below!
We are encouraging everyone to wear RED to stand out as a group!
Thursday 2/25: 8:45am - 12:00pm
Houston Food Bank
535 Portwall St.
Houston, TX 77029
Friday 2/26: 8:45am - 12:00pm
Houston Food Bank
535 Portwall St.
Houston, TX 77029
**Please Note** Once you sign up for the shift, you will receive more information via email directly from the Houston Food Bank. FACE COVERING or MASK REQUIRED - PLEASE BRING YOUR OWN. CLOSED-TOE SHOES REQUIRED. Casual dress recommended - long pants (preferred) and t-shirt with sleeves.
If you can't join us at this time, you can sign up for other available volunteer shifts throughout the day and the week. Visit the Houston Food Bank website for more information.
Other Ways to Help
American Red Cross: This national aid organization offers help during many natural disasters. Right now it has shelters and warming centers at various sites in Houston. Donate to the Houston chapter.
CrowdSource Rescue: This grassroots organization launched as a neighbors-helping-neighbors effort in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey is still at it. In addition to delivering food bank parcels to those in need, they’re now working to help homeowners who do not have power and to transport seniors to hotels during the freeze. Go to crowdsourcerescue.com to help.
Fair Haven Food Pantry: This Spring Branch food pantry, a partnership of Chapelwood United Methodist Church and the Houston Food Bank, will be open to the public on Feb. 20 from 10 am - 2 pm. The Spring Branch site will be handing out "disaster boxes" with non-perishable food, fresh produce, protein and water. It is also anticipating a delivery of MREs (meals ready-to-eat). Its regular hours are 10 am - 2 pm Tuesday - Friday. Volunteer or donate to help feed Houston families.
Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center: The supply of available blood is low and this blood donation center is operating on a limited basis because of severe weather conditions. Search for a site to donate blood.
Houston Food Bank: Houston Food Bank is in need of bottled water and other items to supply to our neighbors in need! How to Donate: Donors can drop off at 535 Portwall St. Houston, TX 77029 in the main entrance parking lot tent via drive-thru. You can also sign up to volunteer at their warehouse or other locations throughout Houston. Visit the Houston Food Bank website to donate or volunteer.
Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston:This multi-service agency administers Volunteer Houston, Meals on Wheels/Animeals, offers refugee services and promotes interfaith and community partnerships, so it has many opportunities for people wanting to help those in need. Right now, pet food for its Animeals program is in short supply. To donate, order pet food on any website and have it shipped to Animeals c/o Interfaith Ministries, 3215 San Jacinto, Houston, TX 77004. The facilities are closed through the end of the week. Go to imgh.org for future volunteer opportunities.
Kids Meals: The local organization has suffered a lot of loss and is essentially starting from scratch. This is the first time in Kids’ Meals 14-year history that weather has forced them to close for more than 24 hours. They desperately need to raise funds in order to get new food supplies. They have begun food distribution again and are working towards resuming full deliveries to 6400 children on Monday, but the rebuilding is far from over. If you can, please help Kids Meals continue providing meals and hope to Houston’s hungriest children. Donate or volunteer to help feed our children.
Ronald McDonald House: Due to water shortages at most of the Med center hospitals, Texas Children's Hospital transported many children to its Ronald McDonald House nearby. Now, they need water and snacks for the unanticipated overflow. Please consider dropping off any items you can for the children and their parents at the Ronald McDonald House, 1907 Holcombe Blvd., Houston, TX 77030.
Drop-off Details: You bring the bags to the front door and press the call button. They’ll come and take them. Individually wrapped snacks and water bottles are best and easiest for the staff and volunteers to distribute.
Items Needed: bottled water, granola, cereal bars, pop tarts, individual packets of crackers and/or pretzels, juice boxes, fruit snacks, microwave meals, tuna and chicken lunch kits, packets of cookies, small single size boxes of cereal. Also, any cleaning supplies (Clorox wipes, etc.) that they cannot order online and are limited in quantity when bought in person would be helpful.
Salvation Army: Offers a variety of services from disaster relief to homeless shelters, food pantries, job training and rehab. Help the Salvation Army.
Star of Hope: The Star of Hope homeless shelter welcomes donations of toiletries such as lotion, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste and airbrushes, plus diapers (size 0) and pull-up diapers (size 4T and 5T), underwear for men and women (all sizes), towels and washcloths, twin size sheets and blankets. Donate at sohmission.org.
Volunteer Houston: This nonprofit is a database with information on hundreds of other agencies who are looking for volunteers and donations throughout Greater Houston. There are also ways to volunteer virtually for those worried about going out in public. Find ways to help through volunteerhou.org.
For Those That Need Assistance
Filing an Insurance Claim:
Texas Department of Insurance has a winter storm resource page with tips to help Texans file a claim and avoid scams. The TDI Help Line is open from Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 7:00pm: 800-252-3439. http://bit.ly/TDI-help
Applying for Disaster Assistance:
A Major Disaster Declaration was approved in 77 Texas counties, including Harris County. Individuals who sustained losses due to the winter storms and do not have insurance can now apply for federal assistance. If your property was damaged in one of the designated counties and you don't have insurance, apply for assistance now:
Call: 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585)
Download: FEMA App
Learn more: fema.gov/disaster/4586
Make Your Voice Heard
Your representatives in the Texas State Legislature need to hear from you. We encourage Texas residents to use the House's public comment portal to formally share their experiences and thoughts about the electric blackouts as the House State Affairs and Energy Resources committees prepare for the 2/25 hearings.