As a resident of Oklahoma, the past two days have been especially difficult for our family. Massive tornadoes ripped through the center of the state, causing unimaginable damage and destruction. On May 19th, 2013 a tornado hit Shawnee, OK and on May 20th, 2013 another tornado hit Newcastle, OK and Moore, OK.

The tornadoes were rated at EF5, with winds upwards of 200 MPH. Little remains in these communities and they look more like war zones than tornado damaged areas. The winds were so strong they ripped up grass and cellar doors off storm shelters. The photo above is a picture of the storm as it crossed our house.

With so much devastation, help is needed. Here are just a few ways you can help out during this especially difficult time for Oklahoma.
tornado

The American Red Cross

As always, the American Red Cross is on the front line in helping out these devastated communities. However, their resources are limited. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief, donate online, or donate by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.

The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is in Oklahoma providing food, water, and essentials to families in need. You can help out their efforts by donating online or texting STORM to 80888 to contribute $10 to the Salvation Army’s relief efforts. You can also make a donation by phone at 1-800-SAL-ARMY. If you’re sending a check make sure you put the words “Oklahoma Tornado Relief” on the check, and mail it to: The Salvation Army, P.O. Box 12600, Oklahoma City, OK. 73157.

Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief

Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief is there to help with cleanup. This is something that sometimes gets overlooked. There are roadways completely blocked, and emergency personnel have difficult times getting to those in need. This is where Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief come in to help. Those interested in helping can make a tax-deductible donation to the BGCO’s Disaster Relief ministry online or call (405) 942-3800. You may also send checks to: BGCO Attn: Disaster Relief 3800 N. May Ave. Oklahoma City, OK 73112.

Bountiful Baskets Food Co-op

Bountiful Baskets is a food co-op that services the Moore and Shawnee area. They are sending relief in the form of “no cooking required” foods and clean water. Bountiful Baskets is accepting donations via Paypal. However, you do not have to have a Paypal account to donate. Simply go to Paypal.com, click on “Transfer” and then “Send Someone Money”. The email address to use for donations is: DisasterRelief@BountifulBaskets.org. 100% of monies donated will be used for the procurement of food and water.

These are just a few of the ways you can help out these families in their time of crisis. Please considering helping out my fellow Oklahomans and donating to one of these fantastic organization and their relief efforts.