India Post News Service
HOUSTON, TX: Sewa International has released $25,000 to help Hurricane Ian victims in Florida. Sewa volunteers have been distributing drinking water, food, and other essential supplies in Fort Myers Beach, Sarasota and other areas impacted by the hurricane. They are working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to aid the affected people.
Sewa volunteers from Orlando and Tampa collected food, water, and other materials and delivered them to the FEMA help centers. They also supplied groceries to the Fort Myers Hindu Temple. Since the hurricane hit the area, the temple has been providing over 500 hot meals daily to physicians, nurses, and people in relief shelters. So far, the temple has served over 3,000 meals and has helped more than 400 families.
According to local officials, Hurricane Ian, which made landfall on September 28, has caused over 137 fatalities. Considered one of the deadliest hurricanes to hit Florida, Ian has caused an estimated $28-63 billion damage, primarily from flooding.
Sewa’s Orlando team on Sunday prepared sandwiches for families affected by the hurricane and delivered non-perishable food items to a Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) center in Clearwater, FL. They also and cleaned debris at Daytona Beach and supplied hundreds of pounds of food to Allen Chapel AME Church in town. To fund its Hurricane Ian relief and resettlement work, Sewa has started a Facebook fundraiser with the goal of raising $100,000.
“Once the roads opened, Sewa volunteers supplied essential items to people stuck without electricity and basic supplies. Our volunteers in Tampa provided cereals, granola bars, sleeping mats, air mattresses, and other items to a veterans group in Fort Myers on Friday, October 7. Sewa is serving people who have lost their homes to flooding and undergoing tremendous stress. It will be a long way to recovery for these families,” Sewa’s Disaster Response Coordinator & Project Manager, Rashmi Singh, said.
“We are working with local Hindu temples and other Indian American organizations in Florida to assess the local needs. Over the weekend, about 25 Sewa volunteers joined the local Crisis Cleanup Team to visit Volusia County. Many of the county’s residents need help with de-clogging the gutters. Another Sewa team is visiting Dunbar and Harlem Heights with essential supplies. The situation is alarming, and we see a huge need for immediate and long-term assistance. We request the community to donate to Sewa to help Hurricane Ian victims get back on track,” AchaleshAmar, Sewa’s Director of Disaster Relief, said.